The Black Cats aim to snap up Cabral on a free transfer.
Sunderland boss Paolo Di Canio is close to making his first signing at the Stadium of Light as FC Basel’s Cabral is on the verge of signing for the club, reports the Daily Mail.
The midfielder is out of contract this summer and therefore would be available as a free agent to the Black Cats, as the new manager aims to put his own stamp on the team.
Cabral was a stalwart in the Swiss champions’ Europa League campaign in 2012/13, playing 10 matches – including a triumphant two-legs over Tottenham – before Basel went out in the semi-finals to eventual winners Chelsea.
The Cape Verde-born player is eligible to feature for the Switzerland national side after playing his entire professional career in the country and representing them at youth level.
Although mainly deployed as a midfielder the 24-year-old is equally adept as a centre-back and is the cousin of former Manchester City player Gelson Fernandes; who spent two years at Eastlands before signing for Swiss side FC Sion in 2009.
Cabral has been at Basel for six years since signing from fellow national side FC Lausanne-Sport in 2007 on a free transfer and he has also spent a year on-loan at La Liga outfit Sevilla.
The Swiss utility man would possibly act as timely defensive cover for Di Canio, as the 44-year-old has let central defenders Titus Bramble and Matthew Kilgallon leave on free transfers this summer.
However, Cabral will also serve as further competition in the centre of the park, with the Black Cats lacking in that area all season and possibly looking to offload some midfielders in the upcoming transfer window.