SUNDERLAND will not be making an improved offer for Mateo Bajamich - but have not given up hope of pulling off a deal for the Argentinian youngster.

The Black Cats tabled a bid of around £500,000 for Bajamich, a 21-year-old forward who plays with Argentinian side Instituto AC, earlier this month.

It looked as though their pursuit of the South American was going to be unsuccessful when MLS side Houston Dynamo firmed up their own interest with a bid of around £1m.

It was reported in the US that Bajamich had agreed the terms of a four-year contract in Houston, but a complicated ownership proposition involving the splitting of the forward’s registration rights is understood to have led to the deal collapsing in the last few days.

Further talks are planned in an attempt to resurrect it, and it has even been suggested in the Argentinian press that Instituto have made renewed contact with Sunderland in an attempt to put forward a deal that would potentially see them retain some of Bajamich’s ownership rights if he moved to Wearside.

Sunderland officials are not interested in such a tangled deal, and the club will not be increasing their initial offer for the youngster, who would not count towards this season’s salary-cap calculations if he joined the Black Cats as he is classed as an Under-21.

However, they are happy for their bid to remain on the table and are open to further discussions if Instituto are unable to reach an agreement with Houston Dynamo.

Sunderland’s bid is understood to include a series of add-ons that could potentially see Bajamich’s initial price rise, and the Wearsiders are willing to agree to a sell-on clause that would see Instituto profit if the striker was to move on for an increased fee in the future.

Instituto are keen to resolve the situation quickly as their vice-president, Mariano Carbonari, has confirmed they need to raise funds through the sale of Bajamich and his team-mate Malcom Braida.