Sunderland boss Sam Allardyce is closing in on his first January signing after Bayern Munich defender Jan Kirchhoff arrived for talks.
Kirchhoff, 25, will undergo a medical after being left out of the Bayern squad that flew to Qatar for a mid-season training camp on Wednesday.
A statement on Bayern's official website said: "The travelling party does not include Jan Kirchhoff, who is away with his agent concluding negotiations for a possible transfer."
Kirchhoff appears to be surplus to requirements in Munich after spending last season on loan with Bundesliga rivals Schalke, with injuries having limited his involvement at the Allianz Arena.
He has made just 10 appearances for Bayern in the two-and-a-half years since he signed from Mainz.
Allardyce's Black Cats have conceded 39 goals in their 20 Premier League games this season and scored just 22.
Those problems at both ends of the pitch have left them in 19th place, four points adrift of of safety.
The manager has also been linked with an interest in Italy striker Ciro Immobile, currently on loan at Spanish club Sevilla from Borussia Dortmund.