SUNDERLAND 10 YEARS AGO: Yorke, Varga and Wallace to sign

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Here’s what the Echo was reporting on SAFC 10 years ago today.

SIX SHOOTERS! Yorke heads list of players set to join Roy’s revolution

Sunderland were today hoping to bring in as many as SIX new players before the transfer window closes – with former Manchester United hero Dwight Yorke leading the way.

Transfer deadline closes at midnight tonight but by the time the chimes end, Roy Keane could have brought in more than half a team!

The Manchester United legend said on his first day in the job on Tuesday that he was looking at as many as 15-20 players who he might approach before today’s deadline. And he has already shown that he means business.

Yorke, currently playing for Sydney FC in Australia, looks certain to arrive on Wearside now after manager Terry Butcher confirmed the player was in talks with Sunderland.

And the only question appears to be whether he will sign before Celtic duo Stan Varga and Ross Wallace make the switch to Wearside.

I can confirm that ex-Black Cat Stan Varga was in Sunderland today having a medical with a view to signing. The 6ft 5ins centre-half travelled to Wearside ahead of Scotland Under 21 midfielder Ross Wallace – but Wallace was on his way down to Sunderland this morning with a view to completing a move.

Twenty-one-year-old Wallace is a left-winger with real pace and a good left foot and his arrival will mean that with the acquisition of Tobias Hysen last week, the left-flank has gone from being Sunderland’s weakest position to one of its strongest.

Sydney boss Butcher initially denied there had been any approach for Yorke, but later the former Sunderland manager admitted: “Sunderland and Sydney FC are in negotiations for the transfer back to England.”

Butcher said: “It will be a big loss to us and to the A-League because he’s our marquee player and will be difficult to replace. We would like him to stay. He’s 34 but he’s still a great player.

Meanwhile, Sunderland continue pursuing targets on other fronts as Keane looks to transform the squad at a stroke. Swedish defender Per Nilsson is still a possibility as are former Juventus centre-half Mark Iuliano, Manchester United midfielder Liam Miller, Portsmouth defender Andy O’Brien, and Blackburn midfielder Jonathan Douglas.

There is evidence too that Celtic’s £2m signing of Thomas Gravesen yesterday could pave the way for either Neil Lennon or Stephen Pearson to move to Sunderland.

The 24-year-old Pearson is a full Scottish international and last week Celtic turned down a £600,000 bid from Derby for him.

Lennon is 35 but still fit. He has been given another 12-month contract at Parkhead but a move to England could appeal to him and he is a combative midfielder in the mould of Roy Keane himself.