West Ham have warned Sunderland they will want “at least” their money back should the Black Cats move for Stewart Downing.
Reports were circulating this morning – led by the local paper, The Northern Echo – that manager Dick Advocaat wanted the player and could make a move as early as this week.
But an Irons source told ClaretandHugh this evening: “Why would Stewart want to go there ? He was one of our best players last season and it’s usually the bigger clubs that are interested not those nearer the middle or, as was the case last season, towards the bottom.
“In any event, we would want the £5 million back we spent on him and a small profit. There has been no approach and Stewart will be looking forward to the new season under a more attacking minded coach than Sam Allardyce.
“We don’t see him leaving West Ham for Sunderland.”