SUNDERLAND will concentrate on offloading the third of their South American flops after Cristian Riveros completed a permanent exit from the Stadium of Light.
Riveros yesterday signed a three-year deal with Turkish outfit Kayserispor for an undisclosed fee – reportedly around the £500,000 mark – after the 29-year-old had joined the Turkish outfit on a season-long loan last summer.
It brought an end to a miserable spell on Wearside for Riveros (pictured), who joined the Black Cats in May 2010 on a Bosman deal from Mexican outfit Cruz Azul.
The Paraguayan, whose sole Sunderland goal came on the final day of last season at West Ham, made just 14 appearances in red and white after former boss Steve Bruce took the view that the midfielder struggled with the physical side of the Premier League.
Riveros was shipped out on loan in the summer and, after holding talks with his agent last month, Martin O’Neill has agreed to cut Sunderland’s losses on the player.
The exit of Riveros does ease the strain on Sunderland’s wage bill and O’Neill will attempt to free up further funds by offloading Argentine defender Marcos Angeleri.
Angeleri is the sole survivor of Sunderland’s South American contingent after Riveros’s international team-mate Paulo Da Silva was sold to Real Zaragoza last summer.
Unlike the Paraguayan pair, Angeleri has barely even figured in the Premier League for the Black Cats – making just two brief substitute appearances, with his only start coming in last season’s FA Cup third round defeat to Notts County.
The 29-year-old was allowed to return home to former club Estudiantes at the tail end of last season, in the hope of a move materialising.
But Angeleri’s long-standing knee problem, which he aggravated in pre-season after moving to Sunderland in a £1.5million deal in the summer of 2010, scuppered his hopes of a deal and he underwent two separate operations on the injury.
Angeleri returned to training at the Academy of Light last month though and, with a year remaining on his contract, has expressed a desire to return to Argentina.
O’Neill said: “I heard talk while he was recuperating that he probably wanted to go back home again. I haven’t sat down and spoken to him yet – there was little point until he got fit.”