SAFC set to seal signing of James McClean

IRISH winger James McClean is expected to complete a move to Sunderland this week, in a switch that has already had repercussions on his international career.

But the 22-year-old will not be the solution to Sunderland’s search for a natural left-sided midfielder, with the Derry City man earmarked as a player for the future.

Black Cats boss Steve Bruce remains on the lookout for a proven wideman after Steed Malbranque’s exit from the Stadium of Light last week made a significant saving to the wage budget.

Bruce still needs to offload more players before he is given the go-ahead to further strengthen Sunderland’s squad.

Efforts are continuing to complete Marcos Angeleri’s return to former club Estudiantes, while Sunderland are working hard to sell George McCartney, Nyron Nosworthy and Matt Kilgallon.

But Bruce has already begun the process of identifying targets with Manchester City’s Craig Bellamy at the top of the Sunderland manager’s list.

Bruce confirmed publicly over the weekend his interest in the former Newcastle United man, who is surplus to requirements at Eastlands.

The Welshman’s £80,000 a-week-wages are the obvious stumbling block, although City could pay a portion of his salary if a loan move was agreed, as they did when the 32-year-old spent last year at hometown club Cardiff City.

Read the full story in Monday’s Mail ...