Transfer news

Diakite agent cools Sunderland talk

May 1, 2013
By Kristan Heneage

The agent of Lazio defender Modibo Diakite has denied reports that his client has agreed a pre-contract deal with Sunderland.

Modibo Diakite
AssociatedModibo Diakite has been linked with a move to England

Diakite, 26, joined Lazio in 2006 and is yet to make an appearance for the club this season. Having lost his place in the first team due to injury, recent speculation has suggested that his time at the Stadio Olimpico is coming to an end, with La Repubblica claiming a deal between the Frenchman and Sunderland had already been agreed.

However, his agent Ulisse Savini has denied those claims, telling lalaziosiamonoi.it: "I honestly know little about that reality. English football fascinates me and [Paolo] Di Canio has brought great enthusiasm, but for now I have not heard from anyone from Sunderland. But if they call us, we would be honoured to speak with them."

If Sunderland are to try and secure a deal for the defender they could face competition from Premier League rivals Liverpool. Reports last month had linked Diakite with a move to Merseyside, while Serie A side Napoli have previously entered discussions with the player's agent.

Speaking to Radio CRC recently, Savini said: "We've agreed terms, but it seems that Napoli don’t have the certainty required to complete the transfer. We are at Napoli’s disposal, but I am obliged to look around as that is my job."