Sunderland close in on first transfer as Trai Hume boosts Northern Ireland hopes

Sunderland are closing in on their first January signing, according to reports.
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Sunderland transfer news

West Ham’s 21-year-old ex-Chelsea midfielder Pierre Ekwah is set to join Tony Mowbray’s young squad at the Academy of Light on a permanent deal, reports French publication Footmercato.

The report also states that he will sign a long-term contract with Sunderland after being convinced by the project at the club set up by majority owner Kyril Louis-Dreyfus.

Sunderland boss Tony Mowbray.Sunderland boss Tony Mowbray.
Sunderland boss Tony Mowbray.
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The two clubs have recent history with Frederik Alves joining on loan last season, whilst Aji Alese made the permanent switch to the Stadium of Light from London Stadium during the summer.

Should he sign, Ekwah would become the club’s first signing of the January transfer window with Sunderland in the market for cover and competition for Corry Evans in the number six role.

Sunderland defender shows his class

Trai Hume has bolstered his international hopes by continuing to shine in front of Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill.

O'Neill has attended Sunderland's two most recent home fixtures after being re-appointed to the job where he enjoyed such stunning success earlier in his career.

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The 20-year-old, who won his first cap in March last year, has taken full advantage of Tony Mowbray's injury issues in defence to establish himself as a regular in the starting XI.

Hume again excelled in the 2-0 win over Middlesbrough, and is even beginning to take up aggressive positions in midfield as Mowbray's attacking plans develop.

The Sunderland head coach said Hume was showing his quality after a frustrating first half of the season.