The two clubs have enjoyed a rather courteous relationship in the transfer market in recent seasons with the likes of Ovie Ejaria, Fabio Borini and Sebastian Coates moving to the Stadium of Light on loan from the Merseyside giants.
And it seems that Sunderland have come to an agreement which will allow two of their highly-rated academy starlets to swap Wearside for the Premier League runners-up.
Speaking after the League One play-off final defeat to Charlton Athletic at Wembley, Donald has admitted that both players have asked to leave Sunderland for Liverpool – though the Black Cats have struck an arrangement which could see a few Reds players arrive at the Stadium of Light in exchange.
“We are having our players poached. There are two players who will go to Liverpool,” Donald said.
We tried to keep them. We said to the parents ‘If you really want to go you have to put it in writing’. The parents have written in and said ‘Thank you Sunderland, we want our lads to go to Liverpool’.
“We could turn around and make that awkward and then they will go in the summer anyway.
"Or we can talk to Liverpool and try and get sell-ons, which they don’t have to give us. Both of those lads, because of the relationship we’ve got with Liverpool which could see some players come in the other direction, we’ve opted for a good working relationship (with).
“We’ve asked them if they will stay and they said no. So we made a commercial decision to try and get the best arrangement.”
It remains to be seen who the as-yet unnamed duo are though The Sun (April 7, page 61) reported recently that young goalkeeper Lewis Hewitson was a target for Liverpool, who wanted to take him on a short trial.
Liverpool have one of the most prosperous academies in English football with Jurgen Klopp giving the likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Ki-Jana Hoever, Curtis Jones and Rafa Camacho their first-team debuts.
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