NACHO Scocco’s brief and unimpressive stay at Sunderland is all but at an end with the attacker’s former club Newell’s Old Boys confident they have landed their man.
Neither the Argentinian outfit nor Sunderland have confirmed a deal has been done.
But reports from South America which have been reliable throughout say that an announcement is imminent with only the loose ends of the move to tie up.
Last week, the Black Cats rejected a £1.75m offer from Newell’s for a player they paid £3.2m for in the January transfer window.
Sunderland were keen to recoup the full amount they paid for a player Sunderland head coach Gus Poyet was confident would be a big hit in the Premier League.
Scocco failed miserably, with no goals and no assists in just eight appearances for the Black Cats, but the 29-year-old has a good pedigree and has always been successful in South America.
And for that reason, Sunderland were hopeful of getting their money back - especially when Newell’s Argentine rivals, River Plate, inquired about the striker’s situation last week.
But Newell’s are reported to have clinched a deal by persuading Sunderland to accept an improved bid of £2.3m bid for Scocco’s permanent signing.
That’s £1m less than Sunderland paid the player barely six months but it returns most of their outlay and removes a big salary from the club wage bill.
That will give Poyet more room to manoeuvre in the current transfer window but so far the club are having no luck with a host of other recent acquisitions they are seeking to offload.
Modibo Diakite, Cabral, David Moberg Karlsson and Valentin Roberge are all players handed lucrative contracts by ex-Director of Football Roberto Diakite while £5m Danny Graham and £3.3m Alfred N’Diaye are players surplus to requirements from the era of former Black Cats’ boss Martin O’Neill.
In recent days Sunderland have turned to Championship clubs in a bid to find buyers for their surplus players - offering bargains such as Danny Graham’s price being slashed from £5m to £1m.
But so far there have been no takers.
The players’ wages are natural deterrents but even when it comes to loan spells, Championship outfits have not been convinced that some of the players Sunderland are looking to offload will significantly improve their squads.