Sunderland are believed to be in talks with Tottenham Hotspur about the signing of midfielder Tom Huddlestone in a deal said to be worth around £5million as new boss Paolo Di Canio looks to add to his squad.
Huddlestone is keen to depart White Hart Lane since enjoying limited opportunities under new boss Andre Villas-Boas and is also the subject of interest from Steve Bruce at Hull City but Sunderland look most likely to secure the 26 year old’s signature.
Officials from the Black Cats have already held talks with Spurs and the North London club are keen to wrap up the deal quickly as manager Andre Villas-Boas prepares his squad for another campaign looking to ensure Champions League football next season.
The deal should go smoothly once Huddlestone agrees personal terms with both clubs happy with the fee and terms of payment.
Fulham were interested in signing the midfielder in January but the deal was shelved due to Villas-Boas’ concerns about cover in the position due to the injury of Brazilian Sandro but the London club have not renewed their enquiries.
Di Canio is likely to make Huddlestone a first team regular which should be enough agree to the switch as he said earlier in the year he felt his time as a fringe player must come to an end.
“At times, you think you might need to move,” he said. “I am 26 now and missed a year to 18 months through injury.
“You just want to play every game and if that opportunity is not at Tottenham, then I will have to look elsewhere.”
The Italian firebrand has already moved to reassure supporters that the club will strengthen in the summer after signing only two teenagers Duncan Watmore and David Moberg and letting keeper Simon Mingolet go so far this transfer window.
“I would like to assure our fans that there is a huge amount of work going on behind the scenes,” said Di Canio following the move of the Belgian goalkeeper to Merseyside. “Our aim is to build a competitive squad for the new season and this deal will give us further ability to strengthen the side.”
“Simon is a fantastic footballer, a fantastic professional and a fantastic lad and I would like to personally thank him for his contribution to the team last season. He was crucial to what we achieved and he goes with the very best wishes of everyone at the club.”