Sunderland are pushing to sign Lazio defender Modibo Diakite.

The Daily Star Sunday says the centre-back, 26, is set to join along with Maritimo defender and fellow Frenchman Valentin Roberge, 25, - both players are free agents.

Di Canio has also been alerted to Mauro Zarate's unrest at Lazio.

The Argentina forward, 26, who had a loan spell with Birmingham in 2008, is trying to negotiate his release.