Sunderland will be hoping to build upon their opening weekend victory over Wigan Athletic by producing an encouraging performance against Milton Keynes Dons tomorrow.
Goals from Aiden McGeady and Ross Stewart sealed all three points for the Black Cats in their clash with the Latics as they managed to deliver an impressive display in-front of their supporters at the Stadium of Light.
With Sunderland looking to launch a push for promotion this season, manager Lee Johnson has decided to make a host of changes to his squad during the current transfer window.
However, despite signing the likes of Alex Pritchard, Corry Evans, Callum Doyle and Dennis Cirkin, the Black Cats boss has ultimately failed to make a breakthrough in terms of his negotiations with Denver Hume.
However, instead of committing his future to the club, Hume has decided to leave his options open.
In need of a new left-back, Johnson opted to bolster his options in this position on Wednesday by swooping for Cirkin.
The 19-year-old defender signed a three-year deal with Sunderland after the club agreed an undisclosed fee with Tottenham Hotspur.
Making reference to Hume, Johnson has now revealed that the 23-year-old has rejected the club's contract offer.
Speaking to the Sunderland Echo ahead of his side's meeting with MK Dons about the defender, the Black Cats boss said: "In terms of negotiations, they have been considered and the best offer has been put forward but the best offer has been declined [by Hume].
"So unless something changes in that spell then obviously things change.
"Obviously, within that, the club have to protect their position having offered the player a contract.
"There's compensation potentially on the back of that if Denver decides not to sign it.
"There's obviously a process that goes along with that and you'll have to ask the powers that be at what stage process falls.
"But at the same time the door is always open while that process is going on for Denver to take that contract offer and that will be up to him, his family and his representatives to decide.
"Bringing Dennis [Cirkin] in would have happened anyway in terms of we always want competition and generally that's two players for each position."
GIVEMESPORT's Joshua Cole says...
Although it is important to note that Johnson has left the door open for Hume to sign a new deal, it is looking increasingly likely that the full-back will be moving on to pastures new.
Still short of options in this particular position despite Cirkin's arrival, Sunderland may need to sign another left-back between now and the end of the transfer window.
When you consider that Hume managed to average a respectable WhoScored match rating of 6.83 in League One last season, Johnson could potentially find it difficult to draft in a replacement who possesses a similar amount of talent.
However, if the Sunderland boss is able to nail his recruitment in the coming weeks, it wouldn't be at all surprising if his side go on to achieve a great deal of success in Hume's absence.
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