Black Cats close in on pair

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Football News

Sunderland are working to thrash out the detail of their proposed swoops for Stephane Sessegnon and Sulley Muntari ahead of Monday's transfer deadline.

The Black Cats were attempting to secure a work permit for Ghana international Muntari after agreeing terms with Inter Milan over a loan deal. They had still to finalise personal terms with the former Portsmouth midfielder, but remained confident of doing so.

They remain confident that they can strike a deal with Paris St Germain which would secure a permanent move for Sessegnon.

Muntari does not currently meet the requirements of having played in 75 per cent of his country's competitive games in the last two years after falling out with former coach Milovan Rajevac. However, Sunderland believe they have a strong case and are hopeful Muntari will be granted a work permit.

The Black Cats made their interest in Benin international Sessegnon known several weeks ago and the player has indicated he is keen to move to the Stadium of Light. However, there is disagreement at PSG over Sessegnon's future and Sunderland have left the ball in the French club's court as they await developments.

Manager Steve Bruce is keeping his fingers crossed as he attempts to make a double breakthrough.

He identified the pair as potential signings before Darren Bent's move to Aston Villa materialised, but sees Sessegnon as a possible solution to his search for back-up to record signing Asamoah Gyan.

An attacking midfielder by trade, Sessegnon has played off a frontman or in a wide role as part of a three-man attack, and Bruce is confident he can perform a similar task on Wearside.

The Sunderland boss has assessed a series of potential striking targets since Bent's departure, but insists he will not spend for spending's sake and has yet to find the value he requires to make a stop-gap signing.

On Friday, Stoke boss Tony Pulis claimed the Black Cats had tabled a bid for striker Ricardo Fuller, but sources in the north-east dismissed the suggestion as "nonsense".

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Stoke City
Premier League
Steve Bruce
Sulley Muntari
Asamoah Gyan
Aston Villa
Ricardo Fuller
Darren Bent

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