Ross McCrorie is on the summer wanted list of Sunderland.
The English League One giants are considering a £800,000 plus move to land the versatile Aberdeen midfielder.
The Black Cats are currently in the play-offs and pushing for promotion to the Championship, where they play Lincoln in the first of their play-off matches this week.
If they were to finally get back into England’s second tier it would seriously strengthen their financial position and see them test the Dons' resolve.
Any bid is likely to see Aberdeen at least double the money they paid to land him on a permanent basis from Rangers.
The 23-year-old arrived in the summer on-loan for the season and was set to sign at the end of this season.
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Aberdeen took the opportunity to fast-forward the move when Rangers moved to sign Scott Wright in January and that took some of the fee off McCrorie’s price tag.
Wright also has previous experience of England as he impressed while on loan at Portsmouth in League One, where he came up against Sunderland.
Sunderland boss Lee Johnson has kept an active eye on the Scottish market signing Ross Stewart from Ross County and Jordan Jones, on loan, from Rangers.
Manager Stephen Glass has already started to reshape his squad.
He told Ash Taylor he wouldn't be getting a new contract and on Sunday night informed Tommie Hoban that he was also surplus to requirements.
The defenders were two of Aberdeen's main players this season but the Dons have already signed Declan Gallagher from Motherwell and have offered a deal to Rotherham's Clark Robertson.
Glass also wants St Mirren midfielder Jamie McGrath and is close to sealing a deal to sign striker Jay Emmanuel Thomas from Livingston.