SUNDERLAND are unlikely to make a move for USA World Cup star Matt Besler, despite the defender claiming interest from the Black Cats.
Besler appeared on American radio yesterday and insisted relegated Fulham had made an offer for his signature, while Sunderland were also preparing a bid to lure him across the Atlantic.
“I know that Fulham has offered to Kansas City and I know that Sunderland put in an offer or are putting in an offer,” he told American radio station Sports Radio 810.
“We’re trying to get something done as soon as possible.”
But SportMail understands that Sunderland are NOT expected to make a concrete offer for the 27-year-old, who shone for the US at the World Cup.
Besler’s club, MLS outfit Sporting Kansas City, are believed to be looking for a fee in excess of £4million for the centre-half, who has another 18 months to run on his contract.
But Sunderland’s focus - as it has been throughout the summer - is geared towards signing players with Premier League experience.
The Black Cats are keen to still recruit a new centre-half, with veteran pair John O’Shea and Wes Brown both in the final 12 months of their contracts at the Stadium of Light.
Sunderland saw their interest in Swansea City’s Ashley Williams come to nothing earlier this month when the 29-year-old penned a new deal at the Liberty Stadium.
And the Wearsiders have so far been frustrated in their attempts to land their other main targets, with moves for both Fabio Borini and Marcos Alonso dragging on.
Borini started for Liverpool in last night’s friendly against Brondby and is currently the only frontman available for the Premier League runners-up, with England duo Daniel Sturridge and Rickie Lambert given extra time off after their participation in the World Cup.
With Luis Suarez joining Barcelona and Iago Aspas returning to Spain on loan with Sevilla, Sunderland’s best hope of landing Borini will be in the final throws of the transfer window.
Meanwhile, Sunderland - along with Porto - have been linked with a move for River Plate forward Leandro Rodriguez.
The Black Cats will be wary of re-entering the South American market though, with the club on the verge of offloading Argentine international Nacho Scocco after just six months at the Stadium of Light.
A payment plan is thought to have been agreed between Sunderland and Newell’s Old Boys over the £2.1million sale of Scocco.
But Scocco’s departure is not expected to be rubber-stamped until next week, with Sunderland still negotiating an outstanding payment with the 29-year-old’s former club, Internacional.