Khazri receives ultimatum
While we wait for Wahbi Khazri’s future to be resolved - which may not be until after the World Cup - the club he spent the season out on loan with last season have issued the player an ultimatum.
Olivier Létang, the president of Rennes, says that they have made an offer for Khazri but are waiting to hear back from the 27-year-old.
In an interview in Le Parisien, Létang told Khazri that they won’t wait forever for him to make a decision:
Today, the ball is in the hands of Wahbi. He has a proposal from the club which, for Rennes, is a very good offer.
We are competing with clubs that have a larger financial footprint but you cannot play with the institution and we need to know quickly if the player wants to be part of this project.
For us, it would be malpractice to only look at Wahbi Khazri. We need to watch players who want to join our project.
We told you yesterday that Khazri’s agent had attempted to get the Tunisian international out of the club on a free transfer, an idea that was promptly thrown out and that an offer of €6m has already been rejected for the player.
So, either a club meets our valuation - which we believe to be a minimum of £10m, or Khazri will be playing League One football next season.
Record signing in demand
Cardiff have outbid Torino for the services of Didier Ndong but so far neither club have met Sunderland’s asking price. According to Gabon news outlet isport, who have spoken to a source close to the player, Cardiff bid €8m for the midfielder, outbidding the Italians by €400k.
As well as those two clubs, Galatasaray and Lyon are thought to be interested in Ndong but as the player had to take a huge cut as a result of the team’s relegation to League One, the club can easily afford to keep him next season. The Gabon international may have to stay and fight for a place next season, despite his desire to leave, unless a club offers what Sunderland believe he is worth.
Oviedo comes out on top in duel with McNair
Northern Ireland faced Costa Rica yesterday, with Sunderland duo Paddy McNair and Bryan Oviedo both starting for their respective international sides - but it was Oviedo’s Costa Rica who comfortably came out on top.
McNair was coming off the back of a man of the match display against Panama earlier in the week, but struggled to get to grips with a more motivated side who were playing their final home game ahead of the World Cup.
Oviedo looked comfortable in a wing back position for Costa Rica and was never really troubled defensively as the home side ran out 3-0 winners thanks to goals from Johan Venegas, Joel Campbell and Francisco Calvo.
Sunderland academy product Trevor Carson also featured for Northern Ireland, who were led out by former Sunderland loan star Jonny Evans.
U23s right back Josh Robson featured yet again while out on loan in Norway.
The Sunderland youngster played the final 10 minutes as Notodden FK fell to a 1-0 away defeat to Stroemmen.
The home side won only their third game of the season thanks to a first half penalty converted by Martin Troeen, but remain in the relegation zone despite the win.
Notodden fall to 10th, but are just four points off the play off places.