Friday, June 19, 2009

Dunne a Sunderland target

Sunderland face an anxious wait to see if they can attract defender Richard Dunne away from Manchester City.

New Black Cats boss Steve Bruce has been heavily linked with a £5million move for the 29-year-old Ireland international since his unveiling as Ricky Sbragia's replacement.

Dunne has emerged as a target amid speculation big-spending City are eyeing Everton's Joleon Lescott and Arsenal's Kolo Toure this summer, but the Black Cats still do not know whether City manager Mark Hughes will be prepared to let the Dubliner leave Eastlands even if he does land his defensive targets.

And even if he is allowed to go, Sunderland are certain to face competition for a player who starred in his country's 1-1 draw in Bulgaria at the start of this month as they edged closer to next summer's World Cup finals.

In the circumstances, they are adopting a measured approach to their summer recruitment programme, which has already seen them touted as potential purchasers for a series of players in a variety of positions.

The acquisition of an experienced central defender to partner £8million signing Anton Ferdinand is a priority, with the former West Ham man having been made to pay for a series of lapses in concentration during his first season on Wearside.

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