Michael Beale has opened up on his search for a new striker at Sunderland this January transfer window.

The former Rangers boss is looking to strengthen his attacking line this month as he aims to continue a push for promotion in the English Championship.

Beale came under fire for his recruitment during his time at Ibrox but he insists at his new club they will only bring in new faces if they are "the right fit".

He said: "We are looking. We're being linked with every No.9 that's breathing at the moment but we're looking for the right No.9 to come and fit in. It has to fit in our budget, the player has to come and be really motivated to help us as well.

"There are one or two other positions we're looking at as well.

"It's generally a difficult month. It seems a few teams around us are certainly loading up. Some teams have already done work. That's not to say we're not busy in the background. We are. But at this moment in time there's nothing to report."

Meanwhile, Sunderland defender Dennis Cirkin has successfully undergone surgery on his left hamstring.

The 21-year-old has been out of action since Sunderland’s goalless draw with Swansea in November and has missed the last 11 games since enduring a repetitive hamstring issue which has limited his game time this season.

The Sky Bet Championship club said Cirkin has now started a rehabilitation programme and is expected to miss the next three months of action.

The left-back has yet to feature under new boss Beale and will remain on the sidelines with fellow defender Niall Huggins, who also underwent surgery recently.