Sunderland reportedly interested in free agent Carlton Cole
Photo source: AP

Sunderland are keen on signing Carlton Cole, according to the Scottish Sun.

The striker is currently a free agent after being released by West Ham United at the end of the 2014-15 season and is searching for a new club.

Cole has been training with Scottish champions Celtic for the past two weeks, with the club hoping to have a good look at the 32-year-old before deciding whether or not to ask him to put pen to paper on a contract, but it is understood that the Black Cats' new manager Sam Allardyce is ready to beat them to the punch.

Allardyce hoping for reunion with Cole

Allardyce and Cole worked together for four years at Upton Park, with both seeing their spells in London come to an end at the same time this summer.

However, the former is now back in work, having signed a two-year deal with Sunderland on Friday, and is already looking to bolster his new squad, with Cole an option he sees as capable of doing so.

Celtic may look to be in pole position to sign the striker, but they have not yet acted upon their interest and their hesitancy to offer him a deal in Scotland could drive him into the arms of the Black Cats.

Sunderland in need of more goals

Though not the most prolific scorer throughout his career, having racked up a career total of 85 goals in 384 appearances, Cole would bring Premier League experience to a struggling North-East outfit looking to keep their place in the division.

With many of Sunderland's attacking options new to England and the division too, the advice he could offer and knowledge he could bring to the team would be priceless, whilst he is guaranteed to net a handful of goals at least.

With the team averaging only a goal per game in the league so far this season, Allardyce is keen to bolster his offensive options on Wearside and will hope to secure Cole's services in a bid to do so.