Sunderland manager Gus Poyet has reportedly set his sights on Hamburg’s German international goalkeeper Rene Adler to provide competition for current number one Vito Mannone.
Adler paid the price for Hamburg’s poor season, which saw them survive in the Bundesliga courtesy of an away goals play-off victory over Greuther Fuerth, by missing out on Joachim Low’s Germany squad for the World Cup and is ready to leave the club in order to pursue a new challenge.
29-year-old Adler is seen as the experienced, reliable option between the sticks that Sunderland have been searching for since Poyet’s arrival in October of last year, and the Wearside club believe he would be available for around £2.5million, according to The Daily Mirror.
Having lost talented stopper Simon Mignolet to Liverpool last summer for £9m, former Coventry man Kieran Westwood started the season as first choice for the Black Cats before a shoulder injury ended his season in January and the Republic of Ireland international has now been released by the club.
Following Westwood’s injury, summer signing Vito Mannone took possession of the gloves at the Stadium of Light and the former Arsenal ‘keeper played a key part in keeping Sunderland in the Premier League with some impressive performances although there were some forgettable moments for the 26-year-old Italian.
Argentinian international Oscar Ustari was brought in to provide competition for Mannone but the 27-year-old failed to make a single premier league appearance for Poyet’s side such was the form of the Italian and he too has been released following his short stint n the North East.
Adler, who has been capped 12 times for Germany, was expected to arrive in England to open contract talks last week but the discovery of a knee ligament injury sustained in the final game of Hamburg’s season has caused a delay.
Sunderland will demand a full medical to take place should the prognosis be positive and Adler be able to resume talks although they have identified Romanian Costel Pantilimon as another potential target should Adler’s injury prove to be more serious.
6’7 Pantilimon left Premier League champions Manchester City at the end of the season on expiry of his contract and feels he is ready to hold down a first team spot with another club following some impressive displays in the citizen’s goal whilst ousting Joe Hart for a brief spell last season.
Adler was once targeted by Manchester United as a potential successor to the retiring Edwin van Der Sar and the former Bayer Leverkusen ‘keeper was believed to have a special release clause in his contract should United ever come in for him and would represent a real coup for Sunderland and Poyet should they land their target.
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