Sunderland have been given a huge boost heading into pre-season with rising star Chris Rigg set to sign his first professional contract with the club.

The England youth international has been the subject of interest from Premier League clubs and European giants after a stellar breakthrough campaign at the Stadium of Light. Having turned 17-years-old last month, Rigg is now eligible to sign professional terms with the Black Cats.

There's been a slight delay in Rigg signing his professional deal, taking time to mull over his options, waiting to see who Sunderland would appoint as their new head coach.

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Now, with Regis Le Bris officially starting his Black Cats' tenure, the red and white youngster is on the verge of committing his future to the club.

Sunderland were relaxed about Rigg's future having held positive talks and agreeing a deal in principle last season.

The England U17s captain made 22 appearances for the first team last season, and the club were confident further assurances of Championship exposure would see Rigg sign fresh terms.

We Are Sunderland understands Rigg will sign a three-year deal at the Stadium of Light despite interest from the Premier League, as first reported by Fabrizio Romano.

Rigg is currently on scholarship terms, with one year left remaining on that deal, meaning any interested parties would need to have agreed a transfer fee with Sunderland.

He would have been able to depart 'on a free' next summer, with the Black Cats owed money in compensation if he were to reject their contract offer.

Fortunately for Sunderland, that isn't the case and they're on the verge of tying down the youngster to a long-term contract.