Sunderland target Altidore coy on future
United States forward Jozy Altidore has remained coy on speculation linking him with a move to Sunderland.
Altidore scored 23 goals during in a second fine season in the Netherlands and has now been linked with a return to the Premier League.
ESPN has been told Sunderland have already seen two bids rejected by AZ, with the club understood to want between €8-10 million for the striker.
While Altidore, 23, would entertain a possible move to Wearside, the American was diplomatic in his opinion, explaining he would have no qualms in remaining at his current club.
“It would not be a problem for me to stay at Alkmaar because I am having a good time here and I have had two good seasons,” he told the Sunderland Echo. “I have not had any problems with my team-mates and I feel fine here. But when you get the possibility to play somewhere else, you always have to think about it.
“In general, you might be happy in your job and you don’t think about leaving it. But if you have the opportunity to work somewhere else, you will think about it. What still counts for me is not the money,” added Altidore. I have to know the feeling at a club suits me and I can develop myself as a football player.”
Also interesting Lazio, the club’s director of football Earnie Stewart admitted on Wednesday a deal is possible provided the fee is right for the Dutch club.
“Sunderland is a team that is interested in Jozy, and that's pretty much where it stands now," Stewart told Goal.com. "They've made a bid for him. We're still in the same situation, but if someone comes in with the right price, that's the way football works."
Stewart added: "It's not like we can say that we're not going to sell anyone. If people come and hit the right price, then it can happen."
Elsewhere, Sunderland have moved a step closer to securing highly-rated Greek teenager Charis Mavrias by agreeing a fee with his club Panathinaikos.
Previously tracked by both Internazionale and Juventus, his club had initially valued the player at around £6 million. However, a crippling financial situation that at one point saw the club struggle to pay an electricity bill has forced them to lower their demands.
Already a full Greek international, the reported four-year deal to take the 19-year-old to Sunderland is understood to be in the region of £2.5 million, with a further £850,000 in potential bonuses.
Meanwhile, Benjamin Mendy has completed his medical at Sunderland ahead of a proposed move. The player tweeted a photo of himself on a private jet in which the flight computer denoted a map of England as the point of origin.