Sauber Formula 1 chief Frederic Vasseur is keen to make a final decision on the team's 2018 driver line-up in the next two weeks as it continues to discuss options with technical partner Ferrari.

Sauber signed a new, expanded technical agreement with Ferrari back in July, securing current-year spec power units from 2018 onwards after a planned deal with Honda was cancelled.

As part of the agreement with Ferrari, Sauber is set to take on at least one of its junior drivers in a race seat for 2018, with Formula 2 champion Charles Leclerc expected to step up after a number of practice run-outs in recent weeks.

Ferrari is also working to secure 2016 GP2 runner-up Antonio Giovinazzi a seat at Sauber, but Marcus Ericsson could keep his drive despite not scoring a point this year by virtue of his links to the team's owners.

Despite talks continuing, Vasseur is hoping to have Sauber's 2018 line-up finalised by the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix next weekend in order to offer stability heading into the new year.

"We will do the announcement, I hope, in Abu Dhabi," Vasseur said.

"For sure we’ll do it before Melbourne next year and that I won’t postpone it each week.

"But I think Charles is doing a good job. The situation in FP1 is not an easy one because the first target is to avoid crashing, and by the way that he’s consistent, and he always shows a strong pace, he’s doing a good job."

With Leclerc, Ericsson and Giovinazzi set to fight over the two available seats, current driver Pascal Wehrlein is poised to depart the team after a single season.

The Mercedes-backed driver has been linked with the sole free seat at Williams, although Robert Kubica is currently the front-runner to take the drive alongside Lance Stroll for 2018.



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