STEVE Bruce has spent the summer worrying about the paucity of strikers at Sunderland, but will soon have quite the opposite problem at the other end of the pitch.

The Black Cats are set to sign Coventry goalkeeper Kieren Westwood when the Republic of Ireland international’s contract expires at the end of the month, added to Craig Gordon, Simon Mignolet and Trevor Carson already at the club.

With Mignolet’s ascension to first-choice for Belgium since his summer signing from Saint Truidense, Westwood’s addition will mean that Sunderland could boast three international goalkeepers when the season begins on August 13.

Such strength in depth between the sticks is reminiscent of 2002-3, when Sunderland, then rock bottom of the Premier League, had Mart Poom, Thomas Myrhe, Jurgen Macho and Thomas Sorensen at their disposal.

But it is unlikely that Bruce will opt to keep all four, looking to either cash in on Gordon, whose contract expires next year, or Carson, who has been at the club since 2004 but has not made a first-team start.

With 26-year-old Westwood is expected to challenge Mignolet for the number one spot, Bruce may even choose to offload both Gordon and Carson, promoting young prospect Jordan Pickford to the reserve team in their defence of their Premier League title.

Bruce will take his time over the tough decision, with Sunderland’s first pre-season fixture more than a month away, against York City at Bootham Crescent on July 13.

Meanwhile, Sunderland reiterated at the weekend that Gordon will not be fit for the start of the season, despite the player’s confidence that he would be “there or thereabouts” in August.

And Bruce said: “We’ve got back-up in Trevor Carson, we’re pretty confident that he is a decent goalkeeper so we’ve got back-up in that respect.

“I’m going to swim with the goalkeepers until we get back and then we’ll see where we are up to with Craig. We’re back on July 6 so we’ve got nearly seven weeks and once we’ve come back to see where he is and where his rehabilitation has taken him and if he’s going to be long term, but I’m not going to do anything just yet.”

Bruce’s search for a striker continues with Peter Crouch stating that he was happy at Tottenham Hotspur.

“Of course I’m happy where I am. It’s a great club and, in my opinion, it’s on the up,” he said.

Bruce had been linked with an interest in the 30-year-old England striker, but with Crouch’s boss Harry Redknapp also denying reports of Crouch being allowed to leave White Hart Lane, any deal looks dead in the water.