SUNDERLAND’S interest in Nacho Scocco appears to have cooled, with Cardiff City now in pole position for the Argentine winger.
Scocco has been on Sunderland’s radar throughout this transfer window – as the 28-year-old was during the summer – with the Black Cats’ interest confirmed by both the forward’s agent and his father.
Sunderland are thought to have made a formal inquiry with Brazilian club Internacional earlier in the month over Scocco’s availability.
But SportMail understands that Internacional held a meeting with Scocco and his agent yesterday and there was no mention of any further interest from Sunderland.
However, fellow strugglers Cardiff City are thought to have made an enquiry and Internacional are now waiting for a concrete bid from the Premier League’s basement boys.
Gus Poyet has refused to comment on the speculation regarding Scocco, but the head coach appeared to brush off Sunderland’s interest when asked by SportMail last week.
Scocco, who netted 30 goals in 46 appearances for Argentine side Newell’s Old Boys last season, would command a significant outlay in terms of wages, while Internacional are looking for a transfer fee in excess of £5million.
While Internacional are likely to accept a lower figure, given Scocco is keen to leave the club, it would still require a significant outlay from Sunderland, who have been cautious over stretching themselves financially in this window, given their Premiere status is in such jeopardy.
And although Sunderland are on the verge of sealing a deal for Argentine centre-half Santiago Vergini, Poyet has been keen to land players with experience of English football, who are able to hit the ground running.
As Poyet told SportMail last week, British players are as high on his radar as any overseas recruits.
He said: “We are looking everywhere. England is part of everywhere and I think the possibility of bringing in a player that is English or British and a foreigner, is exactly the same.
“We try to make sure that we bring in players that have already played in England first, if it is a foreigner.”