Sunderland will delve into the free agent market to sign a centre-back following injuries to Arbenit Xhemajli and Morgan Feeney, as per a report by the Northern Echo. Here are five they could target-
Ryan Shotton- The ex-Stoke City, Derby County and Birmingham City defender is a free agent after being released by Middlesbrough at the end of last season and is someone who Sunderland could look into signing.
Ben Heneghan- He parted company with Sheffield United over the summer having spent the past two seasons on loan in League One at Blackpool. He played a combined 80 times for the Seasiders and chipped in with three goals from defence.
Jack Hobbs- Sunderland boss Phil Parkinson knows the experienced centre-back from managing him at Bolton Wanderers and could look to reunite with him at the Stadium of Light. Hobbs, who is 32 years old, has previously played for the likes of Liverpool, Leicester City, Hull City and Nottingham Forest.
Lloyd Jones- The ex-England Under-20 international was released by Luton Town at the end of the last campaign and will be weighing up his next move. He joined the Hatters in 2018 but was loaned out to Plymouth Argyle and Northampton Town during his time at Kenilworth Road.
Jason Shackell- He is a vastly experienced defender in the Football League and has racked up 551 appearances in his career to date. The veteran defender is available after leaving Lincoln City in May.
In other Sunderland news, The72 looked at three players who could leave them before the transfer deadline.