NIALL Quinn cited the recent signing of Stephane Sessegnon as an example of the progress that Sunderland are making in the football world.
The chairman revealed that not only had the Champions League player taken a cut in wages to move from Paris St Germain to the Stadium of Light but that he had snubbed late interest from both Everton and Aston Villa.
He said: We were so pleased with that.
“Those are clubs that until very recently were competing for players that perhaps wouldn’t have been so interested in us. You might have expected Stephane and his advisers to at least want to talk to those clubs.
“But Stephane was adamant that he wouldn’t.
“I think Steve Bruce had done such a good job in selling the club to Stephane that he was desperate to come here and be a part of it.
“We had worked so hard on what was a very protracted transfer that he felt that we really wanted him and what was so refreshing was that money wasn’t an issue when it came to sitting down to talk about that.”
The Benin international (left) was on a lucrative contract at the leading French club, where Champions League football is the norm rather than the exception.
But Sessegnon was fired up by the challenge of Sunderland and the Premier League.
Chief executive Steve Walton said: “He said he didn’t mind taking a pay cut because he said he would play so well here that we would fall over ourselves to offer him more money in the future.
“That was music to our ears because not only did it show how much he had bought into the club but how determined and motivated he was to succeed once he got here.”