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By ESPN Staff

Sven expecting Dunne to sign new deal

Manchester City manager Sven-Goran Eriksson is confident Richard Dunne will follow in the footsteps of Micah Richards and Dietmar Hamann and sign a new contract with the club.

Richards signed a five-and-a-half year deal last week, while midfielder Hamann yesterday penned a one-year extension to his current contract after impressing this season under Eriksson.

Skipper and centre-back Dunne, who has been with City since October 2000 and who still has 16 months to run on his present deal, is next in line to agree new terms.

Negotiations, though, recently stalled and that has apparently alerted the likes of Celtic and Newcastle to the prospect that Dunne could be available this summer..

But a confident Eriksson told the Manchester Evening News: 'It is still in the pipeline and I am sure he will sign a new contract.'

Midfielder Nery Castillo, meanwhile, is close to a comeback after four weeks out with a shoulder injury.

The Mexican has only made three appearances since joining City at the start of January on a year's loan from Shakhtar Donetsk.

But after seeing Valeri Bojinov and Michael Johnson return from their injury lay-offs in the reserves recently, Eriksson is poised to have another player soon ready for action in Castillo.

'Our medical people have told me Nery is allowed to do everything with the senior squad, including physical contact and tackling, which is good news,' the Swede said.

'It has not been easy for him working with the fitness coaches all the time.'