Sunderland star and former Arsenal man a surprise scouting target by Manchester United after impressive start to the season.
Manchester United have sent scouts to watch Sunderland goalkeeper Vito Mannone, according to Italian publication Gazzetta dello Sport – as reported by the Daily Mirror.
First team football has done Mannone good, with the 25 year-old proving himself worthy of a Premier League starting place at the Stadium of Light after years on the bench at Arsenal.
The Italian has been an impressive presence between the posts for the Black Cats this season, having appeared nervous when called upon by the Gunners.
Manchester United boss David Moyes is happy with the performances of David De Gea as his number one goalkeeper, and said at the end of December that he feels the Spaniard has grown into one of the best custodians in the Premier League.
“One of the hardest things to do is put a young goalkeeper in,” said Moyes to Sky Sports.
“He made a few mistakes but Sir Alex (Ferguson) stuck with him.
“He really trusted him and believed in him and we are seeing the fruits of that.
“He is now turning into a man and getting stronger and looking at the top of his game.
“He is getting used to the Premier League and understanding what he has to do, he is coming and catching and taking things, sometimes that is what you have to do, you have to be brave. He is punching well too.”
If Moyes is looking to bring in Mannone, it would likely be as a backup for De Gea.
Given how much the Italian appears to be enjoying actually playing football though, it may not be as easy as one might expect to convince him to swap the Stadium of Light pitch for the Old Trafford bench.