ANTHONY Reveillere is expected to be handed a contract extension by Sunderland after talks over his future.
Ex-France international Reveillere penned a deal until the end of the season when Sunderland eased their scant defensive options by signing the full-back on a Bosman deal last October.
New boss Dick Advocaat has preferred the more attack-minded Billy Jones at right-back for the last two games, yet despite turning 35, Reveillere has still been one of Sunderland’s most consistent performers this season.
It is understood that Sunderland sporting director Lee Congerton held discussions with Reveillere’s representative earlier this month and expressed the club’s interest in agreeing a new contract during the summer.
That does not come as a huge surprise, with ex-head coach Gus Poyet revealing back in February that Reveillere – who has started 16 games in red and white – had done enough to justify exploring the possibility of extending his stay.
It does not necessarily depend on Sunderland remaining in the Premier League either, with a possibility that Reveillere could be offered fresh terms in the Championship.
Reveillere is happy at Sunderland, despite the club’s troubles at the wrong end of the Premier League, and would be keen to remain at the club.
The former Lyon man, released by Napoli last summer, had turned down interest from Serie A pair Fiorentina and Hellas Vergona to sample English football and still wants to prolong his career.
While Reveillere is unlikely to be a first-team regular next season, he does offer the versatility to play in both full-back positions and would provide some continuity to a Sunderland defence earmarked for big changes this summer.
With Wes Brown out of contract too, and Sebastian Coates almost certain to return to Liverpool at the end of his loan spell, Sunderland will be in the market for fresh recruits at the back.
Sunderland are long-term admirers of Celtic centre-half Virgil van Dijk while they have watched Liverpool youngster Tiago Ilori – currently on loan at French side on Bordeaux – on at least a couple of occasions.
And as reported last week, Santiago Vergini is in line to convert his loan move into a permanent deal, if Sunderland remain in the top flight.
Vergini will pen a two-year contract after meeting the required appearance criteria in his contract.