According to Italian newspaper Tuttosport, want-away Sunderland record signing Didier Ndong is interesting sides both in Italy and the Premier League.
The report claims that Fiorentina and Atlanta are keen on signing the Gabon international, as are recently-promoted Cardiff City. All three clubs are very much in the formative stages of their interest, though, and as far as we know neither side have submitted a formal bid.
The Italian outlet also allege that Neil Warnock’s side may look towards Ndong if they aren’t able to re-sign Marko Grujic from Liverpool, who spent the latter part of last season on loan in South Wales and was part of the side that finished in second place in the Championship.
The ex-Lorient midfielder had looked all set to join Torino last month after a fee was agreed between Sunderland and the Turin-based side, but ridiculous demands relating to bonuses and payments put paid to that piece of business and Walter Mazzarri’s side ended their interest in him.
That’s not to say that they won’t come back in for him, though, but Ndong and his representatives must be more open to conducting fair business if they want to find themselves a new club between now and the end of the Summer transfer window.
Ndong is currently undergoing a disciplinary process with the club as, along with Papy Djilobodji, he hasn’t turned back up for pre-season training at the Academy of Light. He was due back at the start of the week but failed to report for work and, as such, he’s within breach of contract.
Ndong was cited as Sunderland’s record purchase when he was acquired from Ligue 1 side Lorient in the summer of 2016, signed for a fee believed to be around £13.6m, but in truth he struggled to live up to his price tag on Wearside and in the eyes of many supporters was seen as a downgrade on the man he replaced, former France international Yann M’Vila.
The Gabon international failed to register a single appearance whilst out on loan with Watford, but did play on eighteen occasions in the Championship for us last season.
New Sunderland owners Stewart Donald and Charlie Methven have stood firm on valuations of outgoing players, and have cited that they won’t let anyone leave unless we receive bids that match their expectations - which is understood to have taken back agents and clubs who, in the past, had previously been used to taking advantage of the approach used by the previous regime.