After a poor showing last season, Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio has been determined to strengthen the side as they look to avoid getting swept into yet another relegation battle.
With the club having already made several key signings this summer, The Black Cats are keen on continuing their summer spending spree by setting their sights on Portuguese midfielder Raul Meireles.
The former Chelsea and Liverpool player has struggled to make an impact for current club Fenerbahce in the Turkish Super Lig and has been clamouring for a move back to England.
It’s thought that Di Canio is a big fan of the Portuguese player who enjoyed a good spell in the Premier League winning several trophies and proving himself to be a consistent performer week in and week out.
But Sunderland aren’t going to have it their own way in the pursuit for the midfielder with Fulham also eyeing up a move for the Portugal international.
The Cottagers are keen to bring in some experienced players into the squad to help boost the side’s chances of competing for a European qualification place and Meireles is thought to have what’s needed to help lead the squad.
Meireles would certainly have the necessary experience to help boost the chances of several mid-table clubs having played for two of England’s biggest clubs.
In his 2 years in the Premier League, Meireles notched up 92 appearances for both Chelsea and Liverpool where he managed to win both the FA Cup and Champions League with The Blues.
Alongside those accolades, the highly decorated midfielder was also part of Porto’s highly successful squad of the mid 2000’s winning the Portuguese Primeira Liga 4 times during his 6 years at the clubs.
All of that success has meant that Meireles has become a valued part of the Portuguese squad national squad earning 70 caps over the past 7 years.
Should Sunderland sign Meireles, it would mark a considerable transformation at the club who have made a host of signings over the summer break.
The club have spent big on the likes of Vito Mannone and Emmanuele Giaccherini in the past couple of weeks whilst other players such as Modibo Diakite and Cabral moved to the Stadium of Light on free transfers at the start of July.
These series of signings shows that Sunderland are meaning business this season and the signing of a player such as Meireles would certainly help the club propel themselves in the right direction after a dismal performance last season.