Report: Sunderland battling Birmingham and Hull to sign Niall Mason

Chris Coleman manager of Sunderland reacts during the Sky Bet Championship match between Sunderland and Reading at Stadium of Light on December 2, 2017 in Sunderland, England.

Sunderland, Birmingham City and Hull City are among the clubs being credited with interest in Doncaster Rovers' former Aston Villa defender.

Niall Mason of Doncaster Rovers during the Sky Bet League Two match between Doncaster Rovers and Exeter City at Keepmoat Stadium on April 29, 2017 in Doncaster, England.

Sunderland, Birmingham City and Hull City are 'battling it out' to sign Doncaster Rovers defender Niall Mason, according to the Sun.

The former Aston Villa man, who can play anywhere across the back four but has spent much of this season at full-back, has little more than a year left on his Doncaster contract.

And the Sun reports that has attracted interest from 'a host' of other clubs, including Sunderland, Birmingham and Hull - while Leeds United are also namechecked.

Niall Mason of Doncaster Rovers puts pressure on Jack Wilshere of Arsenal during the Carabao Cup Third Round match between Arsenal and Doncaster Rovers at Emirates Stadium on September 20,...

The newspaper claims Sunderland want a pool of younger players who can not only get them out of League One but make an impact, too, at Championship level, leading them to 21-year-old Mason.

Is survival key to Mason signing?

Sunderland, though, are the worst-placed of all the allegedly interested parties, the rest of whom are at least five points clear of the bottom three.

The second-from-bottom Mackems are eight points adrift with only six games remaining, which could leave Birmingham and Hull in a straight fight for the former Real Madrid youngster's signature.

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