Sunderland have moved a step closer to appointing Steve Bruce as their next manager after a compensation package was agreed with Wigan.
The former Manchester United defender is the Black Cats' number one target to replace Ricky Sbragia, who resigned on the final day of the season after keeping the club in the Barclays Premier League.
Wigan chairman Dave Whelan, who paid Birmingham Â£3million to release Bruce from his St Andrews contract in November 2007, insisted the north-east club had to come up with worthwhile remuneration before they could speak to his manager.
That financial package has now been agreed and Sunderland officials are believed to be in Portugal - where Bruce is on holiday - to thrash out personal details.
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