It seems that Sunderland are on a one-club mission to prove that there is still value in the transfer market.
The Black Cats may no longer be locked in financial crisis with Stuart Donald and Charlie Methven breathing fresh life into the club and ending the era of austerity but cheap, bargain signings are still the order of the day. And that does not betray a lack of ambition, more the ability to spot good value in an increasingly warped market place.
On Monday, Sunderland completed the signing of Northern Ireland international Conor McLaughlin on a free transfer. A 27-year-old with 35 caps and a superb record at League One level, he will bring an end Jack Ross’s right-back worries.
Speedy winger Jon Taylor is out of contract too and, according to the Northern Echo, the former Rotherham United winger has already held talks about a potential move to the Stadium of Light.
Sunderland have also offered a contract to Lawrence Shankland, the prolific striker who scored goals for fun at Ayr United in the Scottish second tier last season (Echo).
And then there’s Dimi Konstantopoulos, the veteran Greek goalkeeper who could make the short trip from Middlesbrough to Wearside this summer, the Northern Echo adds.
These four players have something in common; they are all out of contract. So, if the talks progress positively, Sunderland could succeed in reinforcing four different positions without spending a penny.
And that is one way to avoid paying today’s ridiculous prices.
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