Despite reports that Sunderland were determined to seal a deal for Fabio Borini by last Thursday or not at all, the potential transfer to take the 23-year-old Italian striker to the Black Cats permanently just keeps rumbling along. Today's latest news has Sunderland boss Gus Poyet updating the situation—and the update amounts to that there is no update.
"It's still ongoing," he said today when he appeared on TalkSport. "We are still trying. It's a situation that doesn't normally happen in football, when you agree to a price with a club but there are delays in negotiations with the player. Usually it's the other way around and the clubs don't have an agreement. But I still think we have a chance. I'm trying my best."
On the Liverpool side, Brendan Rodgers appears as happy with keeping Borini if the player is determined to stay as to get a reported £14M payday for him if he goes. It's a similar approach to what is being seen with Kolo Toure, where the club has accepted a €2M offer from Trabzonspor but the manager has told the player if he stays he will still be in the club's plans.
If Borini can be convinced that his future lies with Sunderland, Poyet hopes to pair him with Connor Wickham this season after the two youngsters were key to the club's late push to remain in the Premier League last season. However, he will have to fend off interest for Wickham from West Ham to do so, giving him two tough tasks if he's to start the season with his preferred pairing.
"That's the side I don't like about the transfer window," Poyet said. "When somebody is trying to buy one of your players that you want to keep; who is so important. There were no issues; no problems. Now when the offers come in, it makes it difficult for the boy, but from my point of view, Connor is part of my plans. He has been incredible in pre-season and I need him."
If Poyet has his way, Borini and Wickham will be leading his attack come September. Right now, though, it seems just as likely that Sunderland could end up with neither come the end of August.