Cardiff City insist they have had no bids for Sunderland target Jordon Mutch, contradicting reports suggesting the Black Cats had offered £1.5m for the midfielder.
Sunderland head coach Gus Poyet is known to be an admirer of the 22-year-old, and he may well figure on a list of potential summer transfer targets.
But reports that Sunderland have submitted a bid for the former Birmingham man appear to be wide of the mark, with Bluebirds chairman Mehmet Dalman saying there have been no offers for Mutch.
And Dalman also indicated that Cardiff would discourage any such interest, pointing out that Mutch remains part of manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s plans as he looks to take the club back into the Premier League at the first attempt following last season’s relegation.
“We have not received any bids for Jordon and he is in our manager’s plans for next season,” said Dalman.
“Jordon is a Cardiff City player and that will not change.”
While Dalman appears to be confident that Mutch is going nowhere, his stance could change if a firm bid does arrive for a player who scored seven Premier League goals in 35 outings last season – including one against Sunderland in the 2-2 draw between the sides in South Wales at the end of December.
Poyet is working with Sunderland’s new sporting director Lee Congerton to rebuild the Black Cats’ squad.
Already, six out-of-contract players have departed, while five loan players have returned to their parent clubs.
And two players have agreed to sign on Bosman free transfers, with West Brom defender Billy Jones and Wigan midfielder Jordi Gomez due to join on July 1.
Sunderland also remain in talks with out-of-contract midfielders Seb Larsson and Jack Colback.
Of those, Larsson is more likely to extend his stay, although other clubs have also expressed an interest.
Larsson said: “They [Sunderland] want to [keep me] and it’s nice. But it need not necessarily be there, if I decide in a few days. There are suggestions from various clubs.”
Sunderland will play a pre-season friendly against League Two Hartlepool United next month.
Gus Poyet’s Black Cats will visit Victoria Park on Wednesday, July 23, with kick-off at 7.30pm.
Sunderland have already announced a friendly against Carlisle at Brunton Park 24 hours earlier.
And a mixture of first-team and development squad players will visit Blundell Park to face Conference side Grimsby Town on Tuesday, July 29 (7pm).