KIERAN Richardson is on the verge of moving to Fulham after Sunderland accepted a bid for the want-away left-back.
Martin O’Neill confirmed last night that the former Manchester United is in advanced talks with the Cottagers, having withdrawn him from the squad to play Morecambe.
And he said that Richardson, who had indicated he wanted to discuss the move with Fulham, could complete his move to West London by the end of play today.
O’Neill said: “We have accepted a bid from Fulham so he is talking to them now. It is an area we may have to look at now.”
Wing wonders Adam Johnson and James McClean helped to ensure a safe passage into the next round of the Capital One Cup for O’Neill’s new-look side.
Johnson teed up McClean twice in either half to make short work of the Shrimps on a night when the England winger posted a statement of intent for the season ahead.
Johnson’s name was sung from the rafters from the start of the evening and the midfielder illustrated precisely why Sunderland have spent £10million to bring him to Wearside.
He was irresistible at times and gave Sunderland he sort of attacking edge that they have been missing since the controversial sale of Darren Bent some 15 months ago. His corner on 23 minutes set up McClean for the first, and he slid the ball into the path of the Ireland winger in the second half for the critical second goal.
It ensured Sunderland will take their place in the third round of a competition that O’Neill has targeted for serious progress this season.
That much was obvious from the strength of the starting XI sent out by the Black Cats boss, with £12million signing Steven Fletcher also handed a debut by O’Neill.
Fraizer Campbell was on the bench last night but has been told he can leave after Sunderland stalled on contract talks.
The striker is understood to be assessing his options.