Phil Parkinson has highlighted Mateo Bajamich’s pace and skill while explaining Sunderland’s interest in the little-known Argentine striker, speaking in his pre-match press conference to the Chronicle.
Like their local rivals Newcastle United, the Black Cats have prioritised the tried and tested this summer.
But, while tying up deals for seasoned League One performers like Danny Graham, Aiden O’Brien, Bailey Wright and Remi Matthews, the promotion-chasing Wearsiders have also shown an awareness of life outside the third-tier bubble.
Kosovo international Arbenit Xhemajli has arrived from Swiss football and, according to the Echo, a £500,000 bid has been launched for a striker who hit nine goals in 28 games for Instituto in Argentina last season.
But it is not just Bajamich’s finishing skills that have caught Parkinson’s eye.
“He is one of many players who came to our attention, and he is exciting, has pace, and can go past people,” says the former Bolton and Charlton boss.
“There is an interest but it is a very complex deal and there are other players who we are also monitoring as well.
“A bit like Arbenit, he’s a player we became aware of because we are doing our best to cast our net wide and look at other divisions.
“Obviously, I don’t have a deep knowledge of the Argentinian league but it is important that we bring in people who do have an understanding of those leagues.”
Speaking to Radio Impacto earlier in the week, Instituto’s vice-president admitted that Bajamich is in ‘advanced’ talks over a move away, although MLS looks to be his most likely destination right now.
Houston Dynamo have offered £1 million – doubling the bid put on the table by Sunderland (Mundo la Voz).