Sunderland’s disastrous start to their first Championship season in a decade has not exactly helped owner Ellis Short in his desire to sell the club.
The American still remains at the helm despite putting the Black Cats up for sale almost a year ago and, according to the Northern Echo, he is still determined to offload his 100 per cent stake after talks with a German consortium broke down over the summer.
However, with Sunderland sitting second from bottom in the Championship, Short hopes to reduce the wage bill and ease the club’s debt concerns by cashing in on a number of their big-name players in January in order to make the club more attractive to potential buyers.
The report claims that the seldom-seen Jack Rodwell, long-standing Premier League target Lamine Kone, and club-record signing Didier Ndong could all be on the market.
And it’s the latter that will surely command the most interest – but will Sunderland’s desire to sell play into West Ham’s hands?
Ndong, who arrived in Sunderland from Montpellier for £13.6 million in 2016 (Northern Echo), is highly-rated by manager Simon Grayson and has been picked in every Championship game so far this season. Grayson will have little say if a presentable offer arrives in January, however.
Therefore, Ndong may look like a tempting acquisition in the New Year – particularly as Sunderland are crying out for the cash.