Stadium of Light centre back ready for new challenge.
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Bari and Fiorentina are battling to secure the signature of Sunderland defender Anton Ferdinand.
Ferdinand, 25, has struggled to command a regular first-team place this season and has started only three league games for the north east club.
Titus Bramble and Michael Turner have emerged as the first-choice centre back pairing and Ferdinand faces a major battle to win back his place in the side.
Reports in Italy suggest that Bari and Fiorentina are keen to bring Ferdinand to Serie A in January and are planning a £5m bid to secure his signature.
Ferdinand is currently facing problems off the pitch after being arrested and bailed by the police following his failure to turn up for a court appearance earlier this month.
The former West Ham star could decide to have a fresh start abroad and make a shock move away from the Stadium of Light when the transfer window re-opens. (TalkSPORT)
Given the issues Anton has had both on and off the field I would have thought a move to Italy may well be an ideal alternative to warming the bench at Sunderland. The former West Ham defender has found himself out in the cold thanks to the form shown by Messrs Bramble and Turner and Steve Bruce may well feel that after two and a bit seasons that have seen the 25 year have his ups and mainly downs that he could happily take an offer from either Serie A side.
Both Bari and Fiorentina are battling at the wrong end of the table at present but a move to Florence would still be a wise one, not least as they have a side that is clearly good enough to push back up the table.
Rio’s younger brother was at one point talked about as a future England star and Anton has time to pull his career back from the depths and I can see no reason why a move to Italy would not be a useful one and could well get himself out his current rut.