New signing Jason Denayer is looking forward to making a big impact at Sunderland as he teams up with close friend Adnan Januzaj.
The 21-year-old has arrived on a season-long loan from Manchester City and will add competition to David Moyes’ options in central defence.
Denayer grew up with Januzaj and rose up the ranks on the international scene before breaking into the senior squad with Belgium.
Januzaj joined Sunderland on loan from Manchester United, with Moyes using his second domestic loan on deadline day to secure Denayer.
“It is great to have Adnan here,” said Denayer.
“It is not always easy to come to a new club when you know nobody, but he’s here to help me and I know him very well.
“We’re very good friends and we will be happy if we play together on the pitch.
“The last week has been very long and very difficult but now I’m really cool and I’m happy to be here.
“It was very stressful, but I was very happy when it was finished and now its passed I’m looking forward to the season.
“It’s important for me to know all the people here – the staff, the coaches – and to feel comfortable with the players, so the international break is a good time for me to come here.”
Denayer is only 21 but the Belgian international is experienced having spent the past two seasons on loan at Celtic and Turkish side Galatasaray.
“I’m really excited to start the season with Sunderland,” he added.
“I see myself as a defender with physical qualities. I’m quite fast and I can play with the ball.
“I can give something to the team, maybe different, and I hope that is what I will do.
“That is why I come here – to help the team and help myself to grow.
“For me it was a big objective for myself to play in the Premier League because it’s the best league in the world.”