SUNDERLAND are believed to be pursuing a strong interest in Spurs star Michael Dawson with the North Yorkshire-born defender favouring a move to the Stadium of Light.
The Black Cats would appear to be well-served with central defenders, even though Michael Turner has been allowed to leave this summer.
Martin O’Neill has brought in Carlos Cuellar to supplement John O’Shea, Wes Brown, Titus Bramble and Matt Kilgallon and with the club’s priorities still remaining the acquisition of another attacker and a left-back, a move for a centre-half would seem unlikely.
But the Dawson rumours continue to circulate with one informed source suggesting a medical has been scheduled.
And it may be that with the sidelined Brown increasingly injury-prone and Bramble and Kilgallon both in the last year of their contracts, O’Neill might look to bring in Dawson and allow another centre-half to leave either on loan or in a permanent deal.
At the age of 28, Dawson is hardly one for the future and the England international would not come cheap.
But it could be that O’Neill is looking to capitalise on a desire by Spurs to raise money and reduce the size of their squad in order to fund one or two more high-profile signings of their own.
Sunderland have done exactly that – allowing 18 players to leave over the course of the close-season in a drive for quality rather than quantity – with free-signings Cuellar and Louis Saha arriving alongside £12million Steven Fletcher and £10m Adam Johnson.