Wigan boss Roberto Martinez has reiterated his desire to keep hold of midfield star Lee Cattermole.
The England Under 21 star shone for Wigan last term following his move from Middlesbrough.
Now a host of clubs are chasing Cattermole, with Liverpool and Arsenal amongst his admirers.
But it is Sunderland - managed by his former boss Steve Bruce - who have shown the most interest, and have had two bids rejected by The Latics.
Martinez is adamant that Cattermole is essential to his long-term plans.
"I am not surprised at all [by the interest]," Martinez told Sky Sports News.
"You look at Lee last year and then the Under 21s [European Championship] - my only concern was that he could not have a long enough break going into new season.
"But you look at him as a player - technically, physically - he is a leader and we need him in our squad."