SUNDERLAND have had another bid for Steven Fletcher rejected by Wolves.
The Black Cats saw a £12million offer knocked back by the Championship club last week, prompting the Scotland striker to submit a written transfer request.
Sunderland have now made a subsequent, improved offer for the 25-year-old, who resumed training with the Molineux outfit yesterday after shaking off a minor ankle injury.
But Wolves have again turned down the latest bid. They are understood to want in excess of £15m for Fletcher.
Meanwhile, Wolves boss Stale Solbakken has admitted the relegated club is in turmoil.
“We have to be honest and say everything’s a little unsettled,” said Solbakken. “It would be stupid to say everything is fine because it’s not.
“There’s a hangover after three years in the Premier League. It’s a mentally tough situation to then go back to playing Championship football.
“We have to be honest and fight through this. My job is to try to convince everyone we can build a squad ready to challenge in maybe the toughest Championship ever.
“We have to live with all that and I think it’s harder when you’ve come out of the Premier League.
“If I have to change players I will, but if I can do it without changing players then I will.”
Any unease among the squad will not stop Wolves demanding top dollar for their players.
Wolves have rejected West Ham’s £9m offer for winger Matt Jarvis, while they are understood to want in excess of £15m for Fletcher.
Solbakken added: “We’re not giving players away for fun.
“We need to make sure we’re not on the back foot for the next three weeks.
“It’s also a tactical thing – do you buy before you sell or do you have to sell before you buy? Is that the gamble?”
Sunderland are looking at other striking options after baulking at Wolves’ asking price, with Spurs hitman Jermain Defoe among those under consideration.
Defoe made just 11 starts for Spurs in the Premier League last season and admits he would consider a move away if he remains on the fringes of the starting XI.
But Spurs are unlikely to allow the 29-year-old to leave White Hart Lane until they can boost their threadbare attacking options, with the England international the only recognised striker at Andre Villas-Boas’ disposal.
Defoe said today: “Everyone knows how much I love Tottenham. Everybody knows that they are the club I want to play for.
“But last season was heartbreaking for me in terms of putting my body on the line, being prepared to give everything for the club and not getting a game.
“Obviously I have to think seriously about my future. I will talk to the club and see what happens but right now all I want to do is what is best for Tottenham.”