Sunderland winger James McClean is the subject of strong interest from Scottish champions Celtic, amid talk of another signing coming through the doors at Sunderland to replace him as back-up to new boy Emanele Giaccherini.
Paolo Di Canio targeted Greek winger Charis Mavrias from Panathinaikos sometime ago, but the transfer initially stalled following agreement on the fee. However, the deal is back on and the 19-year-old full international is expected to sign this week.
With Giaccherini already in place after his move from Juventus, there appears to be little room for McClean on the left-hand side of midfield. His likely availability alerted Celtic boss Neil Lennon to the possibility of bringing the former Derry City star into the club in the hope it’d provide the controversial Irishman with a fresh start in his career.
McClean caused uproar when choosing to represent the Republic of Ireland having grown up in the Northern Irish youth system. He then had unsavoury things to say on Twitter about various contentious issues, including criticising Republic head coach Giovanni Trapattoni for deciding against selecting him in the starting line-up.
Di Canio is undertaking a complete overhaul of the playing staff at the Stadium of Light and will happily allow McClean the chance to talk terms with Celtic. According to reports, a £2.5m offer should be enough to secure the signature of the 24-year-old.
He’d represent another piece in the jigsaw for Celtic, as Neil Lennon attempts to put together a winning team yet again after the loss of several key players already this window.