By Alex Stevens

Celtic are hot on the heels of Sunderland striker Fabio Borini, according to a report in Italy.

Sky Sports Italy journalist Gianluca Di Marzio has claimed on his personal website that the Scottish giants have identified Borini, 26, as a summer transfer target.

It is said that new Hoops head of recruitment Lee Congerton has been monitoring the former Liverpool and Roma man.

Di Marzio reports that Rodgers is also interested in being reunited with a player he worked with at Liverpool, Swansea and Chelsea, where he managed the reserve team.

The excellence of Jermain Defoe has forced Borini down the pecking order this season at Sunderland, where he has scored just once in 19 matches.

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But the Italy international has proved that he can make a significant impact in the Premier League and his goals were key to keeping Sunderland up last season.

With the Black Cats set for the drop, Borini, who has also played for Roma in his homeland, could be looking for a move away from the club this summer.

Rodgers made him his first Anfield signing for £12million in 2012 and Borini moved to Sunderland for a similar fee three years later.

Celtic are in the market for a new striker amid doubts over the long-term future of Moussa Dembele, who is attracting interest from the Premier League big guns on the back of a campaign in which he has set the Scottish league alight.

Rodgers was handed a four-year contract last week just days after Celtic secured their sixth consecutive Scottish Premiership title in record time on the back of a 31-match unbeaten run.

The Hoops have already won the Scottish Cup while there’s also a Scottish Cup semi-final to come against Rangers in 10 days as they chase a first domestic clean sweep for 16 years.

Rodgers also took Celtic into the Champions League group stages, where they secured a memorable draw against Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City.

In other Celtic news, the deal is all but done for a proven Premier League performer to sign for the Scottish giants.

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