Agent: Sunderland want Paulinho

The agent of Livorno’s Brazilian striker Paulinho has revealed he expects Sunderland to make an offer for his client.

Paulinho, 27, began his career with Juventude in his homeland before moving to Labronici, initially on loan, in 2005. Contributing over 20 goals this season as the club secured promotion from Serie B, the forward has been given a price tag of between €10-12million by his club.

Already announcing a trio of new arrivals this week, Paolo Di Canio is keen to bring a number of new faces to the Stadium of Light this summer. And while the player’s agent, Eugenio Ascari, admits Sampdoria are the only club thus far with a firm offer, he revealed he expects to receive an offer from the Black Cats imminently.

"He did very well this year, 20 goals in the regular season and three decisive playoff goals,” Ascari told tuttomercatoweb.com. "It is normal to have attracted the attention of clubs in Italy. Sampdoria's offer is the most concrete, they have followed Paulinho for two-three months and we have already had some contact with them. Abroad, I think that Di Canio's Sunderland are planning to make an offer soon, and then every day I always read new teams are interested in the press.

“I think he's done very well and Paulinho deserves a quality jump with all due respect to the Livorno. Sampdoria would represent already from the professional point of view a quantum leap, it has a different charm and appeal.”

Meanwhile Sunderland have reportedly been knocked back in their attempts to sign Internazionale midfielder Alfred Duncan.

The 20-year-old Ghanaian made his Serie A debut in 2012 when he came on as a late substitute for Walter Gargano.

Familiar to Sunderland’s new chief scout Valentino Angeloni from his time at the club, Sky Italia claimed a bid in the region of £5million has already been rejected.

Having only recently completed a loan spell at Livorno in Serie B, the news was followed by an admission from Livorno’s president Aldo Spinelli that new manager Walter Mazzarri is keen to evaluate the player, with his club holding first option on Duncan should the Nerazzurri allow him to leave.