Sunderland eye double defensive signing before deadline

Lamine Kone
Lamine Kone
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Sunderland are striving to make a double defensive capture before Monday's transfer deadline after a third move for Lorient centre-half Lamine Kone.

Sam Allardyce confirmed last week that he was hoping to bring in one more addition at the back in the final days of the January transfer window, yet two could be on the cards, with the Black Cats in talks for both Kone and Arsenal right-back Mathieu Debuchy.

Sunderland ended their interest in Kone for a second time last week after a proposed loan move collapsed for the Ivory Coast international.

However, with Sunderland defender Sebastian Coates closing in on a switch to Portugese side Sporting Lisbon, the Black Cats have again approached Lorient with a permanent move for Kone.

"Sunderland have returned with an offer that we could not refuse," confirmed Lorient vice-president Alex Hayes.

"The ball now rests in the camp of Lamine Kone. He must make a decision in the coming hours."

The move for Kone has been a saga throughout the window after an original £5m move collapsed at the start of January, with Lorient bitterly attacking Sunderland's conduct.

But the 26-year-old has remained on Sunderland's radar and he is expected to take the place of Coates in Allardyce's ranks, with the Uruguayan on the verge of joining Sporting on loan until the end of the season, with a view to a permanent switch next summer.

Coates only joined Sunderland in a £2m move from Liverpool six months ago, yet he has failed to start in the Premier League during 2016, with veteran Wes Brown moving ahead of him in the pecking order.

Reports in Portugal have suggested that the permanent fee agreed for Coates could be worth more than £3m.

Sunderland are also hoping to strike a loan deal for ex-Newcastle United defender Debuchy, who is keen to leave Arsenal to play regular first-team football.

Debuchy wants to secure his place in the France squad for the summer's European Championships and has not featured for the Gunners since November.

Aston Villa have been in talks over Debuchy throughout the window, but Sunderland are hoping to pip the Premier League's basement boys to the 30-year-old.

Allardyce also remains keen to add another forward to his squad, with Sunderland continuing their efforts to land Swansea's Andre Ayew.

Swansea yesterday denied that Sunderland had made an improved bid for Ayew, yet the Ghana international remains one of Allardyce's top targets.