Aberdeen have announced that they have "reluctantly" granted permission to Sunderland to speak to their manager Derek McInnes.
The Black Cats have been targeting McInnes to replace David Moyes, who left in the wake of their relegation to the Championship last season.
The statement issued by the Scottish Premier League side read: "The club can confirm that early this afternoon Sunderland FC agreed to meet all the contractual obligations for both Derek McInnes and (assistant) Tony Docherty and they have, reluctantly, been granted permission to speak with both of them about the vacant managerial position at Sunderland.
"Aberdeen FC will be making no further comment at this moment in time."
Everton have agreed a fee with Sunderland for goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, according to Press Association Sport.
The Black Cats have accepted an offer from the Merseyside club which could rise to £30million with various add-ons included in the package.
Pickford was one of the few bright spots as Sunderland were relegated last term and he is currently in Poland with England Under-21s.
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Sunderland and Bournemouth have been charged by the Football Association with failing to control their players during Saturday's Premier League clash at the Stadium of Light.
The allegation surrounds an incident which happened 76 minutes into the Cherries' 1-0 win on Wearside following Fabio Borini's challenge on Lewis Cook.
Both Sunderland and Bournemouth have been charged following their game on Saturday.
It is alleged that in or around the 76th minute of the fixture, the clubs failed to ensure that their players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion. They have until 6pm on 5 May 2017 to respond to the charge.
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