SUNDERLAND are taking a patient approach in Jack Colback’s contract talks, with the club’s uncertain future holding up proceedings.
Black Cats boss Gus Poyet has confirmed that negotiations are continuing over tying academy product Colback down to a new deal, with his current contract due to expire at the end of the season.
Colback produced a man of the match performance in last weekend’s Tyne-Wear derby success and has no shortage of admirers, with Everton and today’s opponents Hull City among those who have checked on the 24-year-old’s status at the Stadium of Light.
Poyet is hopeful that Colback will pen a new deal and it remains likely that the Tynesider will still be a Sunderland player next season.
But with Sunderland still in the thick of the relegation dogfight, Poyet understands that any resolutions will drag on until the Black Cats’ Premier League status is more assured.
Poyet told SportMail: “We are negotiating.
“But it’s a difficult situation that we’re in.
“I would love to decide everything tomorrow and by the end of the month, we can start preparing for pre-season.
“But can I do that? Not really.
“When you’re making decisions because of the way I set up my team and squad, if I know who I’ve got, I can start looking for particular players.
“But that’s tough at the moment.”
Despite the question marks over which division Sunderland will playing in next season though, Poyet says the club needs to make a start in planning for the future, particularly as Colback is one of seven players out of contract in the summer.
“These are the things we need to start doing slowly,” added the head coach.
“There are a few issues that we need to do anyway and there’s a few where we need to wait a bit longer.
“It’s not just us, it’s the players as well. They want to wait.”