Player News - Sunderland

Date: Team: Pos:

Dick Advocaat has confirmed that Sunderland midfielder Jordi Gomez will miss the start of the new PL season after failing to recover from a knee injury.

Gomez suffered a small hairline patella fracture in a freak training ground accident back in May and although it was originally envisaged that the 30 year-old would return to full fitness by mid-July, his recovery has been slower than anticipated with the Spanish playmaker currently in light training. Realistically Gomez should be available from September and remains the only Black Cat who is expected to miss Sunderlands' penultimate friendly - against Doncaster Rovers - on Wednesday as Advocaat boasts a relatively clean bill of health. Both Danny Graham and Connor Wickham were rested as a precaution in Toronto but should be okay along with new signings Jermaine Lens and Younes Kaboul. Sebastian Coates may need more time following a late return from the Copa America.
Jul 25 - 11:24 AM

Sunderland goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon has confirmed that he will be ready for GW1 after his first appearance of the close season during Wednesdays’ win 2-1 over Toronto FC.

Pantilimon has been sidelined since May after picking up a knee injury during the draw with Arsenal at the Emirates – a result which guaranteed the Black Cats PL status for another year. Pantilimon started the 2014/15 campaign as a No.2 on Wearside playing second fiddle to Vito Mannone but following back-to-back defeats in October - which included an 8-nil drubbing at St Mary’s - the Romanian stopper was called into action and didn’t look back registering 11 clean sheets in his 28 starts. Danny Graham and Connor Wickham missed the final game of the North American tour but their problems are only believed to be minor, however Jordi Gomez isn’t progressing as hoped – fractured patellar – and could be out until September.
Jul 24 - 7:05 AM

Jermain Defoe strikes twice against former club Toronto, giving us a glimpse at what we can expect from Sunderland next season…

Jermain Defoe came back to haunt former club Toronto with two goals in five second half minutes, in the final match of their pre-season tour. Toronto had taken the lead at the start of the second half, but two typically sharp finishes saw the tour close on a high. The Black Cats set up in a 4-4-2 formation, with Defoe up front with Steven Fletcher. Lee Cattermole and Jack Rodwell anchored the midfield with Seb Larsson wide right and Adam Johnson on the left. Brad Jones and new recruit Adam Matthew’s shared the right-back duties, playing a half each. With veterans Wes Brown and John O’Shea at center-back and Patrick van Aanholt at left-back. Looking ahead, we can expect Sebastien Coates and Younes Kaboul to come into the center of defense and Jeremain Lens to replace Adam Johnson on the left, or perhaps Fletcher if Dick Advocaat reverts back to the 4-3-3 that he ended last season with.
Source: Daily Mail
Jul 23 - 5:24 AM

Jermain Defoe got the chance to face his former club Toronto FC and made the most of it, bagging a brace as Sunderland won their friendly on Canadian soil, 1-2.

The match would have been all the more intriguing if former Black Cat Jozy Altidore was available for Toronto but Defoe did well to grab all the drama for himself. The first half had little action in terms of goal scoring opportunities, but things certainly got physical for a supposed friendly. Toronto would score first, just a minute into the second half. Defoe, who started the game, was still in on the 62nd minute when he leveled the match with a strike from the top of the box. Four minutes later, he gave Sunderland the lead and for good, when Steven Fletcher picked him out for a simple tap in. Defoe will probably be the minutes leader at the forward position for Sunderland this season and has an established nose for goal. He makes for a decent 2nd striker option in draft leagues and will probably have a run of form at some point this season that gets his named talked about in circles.
Jul 22 - 10:30 PM

Dick Advocaat says two more pieces of the jigsaw are required to complete his Sunderland vision. But chairman Ellis Short says that up to seven have to go…

It’s already been a busy summer at the Stadium of Light, but there is a bit of work to do yet before the manager and chairman happy. Boss Dick Advocaat says he is two short of his vision. Chairman Ellis Short is happy to back his manager, but insists the wage bill needs to be trimmed. The two additions required are thought to be a striker and a creative midfield player, the players to go are easier to forecast. Valentin Roberge and Charis Mavrias were left out of the pre-season squad, so clearly considered deadwood. Ex-Brighton pair Will Buckley and Liam Birdcutt made the trip but the club will listen to offers. Strikers Steven Fletcher and Danny Graham have both been linked with moves and are in the final year of their contracts. Vito Mannone could also be on his way. The keeper has not featured since conceding ten in two matches in October and academy product Jordan Pickford is highly thought of.
Jul 22 - 5:12 AM

Boss Dick Advocaat has insisted he will stick with the attacking formation that kept Sunderland up…

Sunderland fans must be wondering what to expect next season, but in a good way. Last season ended with the team in a 4-3-3 formation. A bold, backs-to-the-wall strategy to get three forwards on the pitch to maximize goal scoring opportunities. And it worked. So much so that boss Dick Advocaat has insisted that the policy will continue this season, with £8m winger Jeremain Lens key to his plans. Lens was generally thought to be bought as a striker and boasts a goal scoring record to match – 39 goals in 82 matches at PSV Eindhoven and Dynamo Kiev. But it is clear Advocaat sees him as a wide player. ‘Lens is not really a player for 4-4-2. He can play left or right, he is always a threat there.’ This suggests two things: that Sunderland are still on the lookout for a central striker to bolster their attack. And that Lens might be a midfielder that appeals to many FL managers.
Jul 20 - 5:55 AM

Sunderland insist there are more signings to come before the start of the season and are in talks with at least two targets…

Despite shelling out £10 million in the space of 24 hours, Sunderland are still very much in the hunt for new faces. With a striker and creative midfielder on the wish list. Dick Advocaat still has funds at his disposal as the capture of center-back Younes Kaboul proved £4m cheaper than the proposed deal for Belgian international Nicolas Lombaerts (who failed his medical). Plus, money had been allocated to buying Stewart Downing before he opted to return to Middlesbrough. That could add up to around £10m still in the pot. The club also has two domestic loans still available to them so expect to add at least two more to the pool before they kick off their season at Leicester City.
Jul 18 - 6:18 AM

Sunderland have made their third signing of the close season having agreed a $12 million deal to take Dynamo Kiev midfielder Jermaine Lens to the Stadium of Light.

Lens is reunited with his former boss Dick Advocaat - AZ Alkmaar and PSV Eindhoven – signing a 4 year contract and joins with the reputation of being a quick left-sided attacking player. The 27 year-old enjoyed a fruitful campaign last season – 5 goals plus 11 assists – and leaves the Ukraine double winners after 24 months. His arrival on Wearside will give the Back Cats options especially given Adam Johnson is awaiting trial and facing three counts of sexual activity with a child in August. Sunderland have already added Sebastian Coates and Adam Matthews to the ranks but Santiago Vergini leaves the club on a season long loan deal joining La Liga side Getafe.
Source: BBC Sport
Jul 16 - 10:08 AM

Sunderland have announced a loan deal with Getafe for defender Sergio Vergini with a view to the move becoming permanent.

The Black Cats are attempting to overhaul their defense. It appears that Younes Kaboul will be arriving to help anchor the central defense and leaving at the same time will be Vergini. The dual move, coming almost immediately after Vergini's move to Sunderland became permanent shows the perils of their frequent changes in the manager's chair. They seem to be treading water buying and selling players that fit a new manager's blueprint just about every six months.
Jul 16 - 9:05 AM

Sunderland have reportedly agreed a £9 million fee with Dynamo Kiev for striker Jeremain Lens…

Several news outlets are reporting that Dutch striker Jeremain Lens is awaiting a medical ahead of completing a £9 million transfer to Sunderland. A goal scorer was manager Dick Advocaat’s number one priority after a dire season in the PL, but so far all transfer business has been at the other end of the team – adding defenders Sebastien Coates and Adam Matthews. Advocaat knows his country man Lens from their days at PSV Eindhoven – where he hit 34 goals in 96 appearances, before joining Dynamo Kiev where he has enjoyed league and cup success in the last two seasons. Sunderland fans will be delighted at the news as Lens was thought to be tracked by several clubs across Europe. Steven Fletcher, Conor Wickham and Danny Graham are likely to be less enthusiastic.
Source: The Metro
Jul 13 - 3:56 PM

Sunderland center-back Santiago Vergini has been told to look for a new club just as his loan move becomes permanent…

The Argentine defender’s loan move became permanent because he played more than 20 matches last season, triggering a clause in his contract. But that deal was struck by previous manager Gus Poyet and cuts no ice with the current incumbent Dick Advocaat. Vergini was dropped after the 4-1 horror show v Crystal Palace last season and didn’t feature again. Sebastian Coates replaced him and his performances in the final six matches earned him a permanent deal. Sunderland are looking to add another center-back so will be well stocked in that area. With Wes Brown given another year, John O’Shea, Coates and academy product Tom Beadling tipped to breakthrough this season.
Jul 9 - 7:31 AM

Sunderland boss Dick Advocaat says he is looking to add at least three, possibly four more new faces before the start of the season…

It’s been a fairly busy summer at Sunderland already with two new faces added, but the manager insists there is more to come. Dick Advocaat quickly identified the defense as an area that required strengthening, making center-back Sebastian Coates’ loan move permanent and taking right-back Adam Matthews from Celtic. Another center-back is on the shopping list, with Belgian international Nicolas Lombaerts targeted. Then attention will turn to adding attacking options, with contact already made with wingers Jeremain Lens and Stewart Downing. Advocaat bemoaned the lack of chances created last season – only relegated Burnley scored fewer goals with strikers Steven Fletcher, Conor Wickham and Jermain Defoe contributing just 14 between them.
Jul 9 - 7:02 AM

Fabio Borini looks set to remain a Liverpool player - certainly for the time being - as talks with Lazio appear to have broken down over the players personal terms.

A fee had been agreed by the two clubs but Italian newspaper Il Messaggero report that a disagreement between the owners of Lazio and the players representatives means that the proposed move has been shelved. Borini of course has previous having rejected not one but two moves last summer for having "wildly unrealistic expectations" with his salary rumoured to be in excess of £140k per week. With two years still to run on his current contract Borini seems quite happy to sit back despite the arrival of Danny Ings and a proposed move for Christian Benteke pushing the Italian even further down the pecking order.
Source: talkSPORT
Jul 6 - 1:18 PM

Sunderland have bid for their third new defender in a week, offering £5 million for Zenit St Petersburg centre-back Nicolas Lombaerts…

Another day, another defender. It is clear where manager Dick Advocaat thinks improvements are required at Sunderland ahead of the new season. After this week securing centre-back Sebastian Coates on a permanent deal from Liverpool, then signing right-back Adam Matthews from Celtic – the Sunderland manager is now looking to add 30-year-old centre-back Nicholas Lombaerts from Zenit St Petersburg. Advocaat knows the Belgian well from his time as the national team coach and Zenit, where he previously signed Lombaerts in 2007. The Russian club value the defender at £10 million and have so far resisted enquiries from Everton among others. Sunderland have tabled an opening bid of half that figure hoping that Advocaat’s previous associations will prove influential.
Source: Daily Mail
Jul 3 - 4:46 AM

Sunderland have reportedly agreed a fee of £2 million for Celtic right-back Adam Matthews, just a day after signing central defender Sebastian Coates on a permanent deal…

Dick Advocaat is on the verge of making his second signing in a little over 24 hours, with Sunderland agreeing a fee for Celtic right-back Adam Matthews. It looked like the proposed transfer had fallen through after an initial £1.5 million bid was turned down earlier in the week. But Celtic’s signing of Manchester United right-back Saidy Janko and an improved offer – thought to be closer to £2 million – was enough to resurrect the deal. Welsh international Matthews made over 100 appearances for Celtic after being released by Cardiff in 2011. The 23-year-old will compete with Billy Jones for the slot alongside fellow new boy Sebastian Coates.
Jul 2 - 4:21 PM

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