Hamburg SV defender Guy Demel has confirmed Sunderland are one of a host of clubs chasing his signature.
As revealed by skysports.com earlier this week, the Ivorian right-back is attracting interest from several leading clubs across Europe, including AC Milan, with his contract set to expire this summer.
Demel, currently on international duty at the African Cup of Nations, claims he will not force a move in the January transfer window unless his club are willing to cash in.
"I am unaware of all those rumours, but I am in touch with my player agent and he told me there would be clubs keen on me," Demel told Hamburger Morgenpost.
"I am aware Sunderland FC is interested in me, I have been further told that one or more club from England and also AC Milan would be ready to move for me.
"But I am still a player of Hamburger SV and have liked it at Hamburg very much. I am still part of this squad, though."
Demel spent a year with Arsenal before moving to the Bundesliga in 2001 with Dortmund, and he appears open to the prospect of a return to England.
"At first, Hamburger SV would need to agree with Sunderland FC, before I am unable to negotiate anything," he added.
"The club is aware there will be a bid dropping in soon. Should the club really consider selling me, then it would probably be time to leave.
"Currently, it is quite difficult to say anything else, my focus is the Africa Cup of Nations for the time being. Then we are going to see."
Demel, 28, has scored two goals in 98 Bundesliga appearances while at Hamburg and at present has nine international caps to his name.