Bridge on the verge of shock loan deal with Sunderland


Martin Hardy,Sam Wallace
Tuesday 31 January 2012 01:00

Wayne Bridge was last night on the brink of completing a shock move to Sunderland and ending his Manchester City misery.

The England defender will undergo a medical at the Academy of Light today after terms were agreed between the two Premier League sides.

If his registration can be completed in time, Bridge is in line to make his debut for Sunderland against Norwich tomorrow night.

It is expected that City will continue to pay a percentage of Bridge's £85,000-a-week salary.

For Bridge, the move will signify the end of a miserable period in his career under Roberto Mancini. The 31-year-old, capped 36 times for his country, has been forced to train with City's elite development squad (the reserves) this season and has started only one Carling Cup game.

The deal is a loan until the end of the season, at which point the player and both clubs will reassess the situation. Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill admitted yesterday that he wanted three new players because of a succession of injuries to his squad, and has also offered Kevin Davies an 18-month contract at the Stadium of Light, a move so far blocked by Bolton.

The Queen's Park Rangers manager Mark Hughes is closing in on a deal for Djibril Cissé, the former Liverpool forward, who is currently at Lazio in Italy. "We're hoping it's going to be concluded – it's taking a little bit of time," Hughes said. There had been suggestions the Italian club wanted QPR playmaker Adel Taarabt in exchange but that was denied by the manager.

Samba Diakité, the Mali midfield player, has arrived at Loftus Road on loan from French side Nancy until the end of the season, with an option to buy the 23-year-old. And Hughes is also weighing up another move for Hugo Rodallega, the Wigan Athletic forward.

Kevin De Bruyne was yesterday undergoing a medical at Chelsea ahead of his move from Genk. The 20-year-old midfielder should join the Blues in a £6.7m deal on a five-and-a-half-year contract, which would see him loaned back to his current team for the rest of the season.

Bolton Wanderers manager Owen Coyle has reiterated his desire to keep hold of striker Kevin Davies – but admits the situation ultimately depends on the striker himself. Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill has made a bid for the 34-year-old which was rejected.

"I want Kevin here, regardless of what offer is made," said Coyle. "The only thing that would change that circumstance is if he said to me: 'Gaffer, I think I want to look at that.'"

Coyle also confirmed he has made an offer to Crystal Palace for highly regarded winger Wilfried Zaha. Bolton are also believed to be close to completing a loan deal for the Arsenal forward Ryo Miyaichi.

Pawel Brozek has joined Celtic on loan from Trabzonspor, the SPL club confirmed yesterday. The Polish striker, 28, will spend the remainder of the season at Parkhead, with an option to make the move permanent.

Billy Sharp is set to join Southampton after Doncaster confirmed they had accepted a bid for the 25-year-old striker, who has 10 goals in 20 appearances this season despite Doncaster's struggles in the Championship relegation zone.

Despite the prospect of an FA Cup fifth-round tie against Stoke City next month, prolific striker Matt Tubbs is leaving Crawley Town for AFC Bournemouth. The striker described it as a "dream move", after signing a three-and-a-half-year deal.

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