Vito Mannone could be set for a move away from the Stadium of Light after reports suggest that Sunderland are ready to listen to offers for the former Arsenal goalkeeper.
Mannone played second fiddle to Costel Pantilimon for much of the last season. This was rather surprising considering thatMannone was named as the club’s Player of the Year just 12 months prior to the arrival of Pantilimon. The player still has two years left on his contract and it is believed that the club see this is an ideal opportunity to cash in on the player.
Pantilimon came as the backup for the Italian goalkeeper after having just been released by champions Manchester City. Initially, he found opportunities at the Stadium of Light limited for his liking. His major breakthrough came during the early part of the campaign when Sunderland were on a rotten run of form that saw them suffer an 8-0 thrashing at the hands of Southampton. This coupled with several other high-profile defeats led to Mannone being dropped from the team. Since then, Pantilimon has kept his place in the starting line-up without any concern. Sunderland are planning to replace Mannone without stepping into the transfer market.
They are believed to have zeroed in on Jordan Pickford, who is one of the stars in the club’s youth academy, as the candidate to replace the 27-year-old. After managing to convince Dick Advocaat for a second season at Sunderland, the club were believed to be looking at signing former England star Robert Green from QPR. Green could be available on a cheap after his QPR team were relegated into the Championship with massive financial difficulties. Jordan has spent the last few seasons on loan at clubs like Carlisle United and Bradford but he will now be part of the first-team.