Sunderland snap up Gothenburg’s Karlsson

Paolo Di Canio.
Paolo Di Canio.
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DAVID Moberg Karlsson became Sunderland’s sixth summer signing yesterday when he agreed a four-year deal, for a fee believed to be in the region of £1.5million.

The 19-year old Gothenburg winger flew in to Wearside to undergo a medical and iron out the last details of a long-term deal and the deal was concluded yesterday afternoon.

It means he joins Valentin Roberge, Modibo Diakite, El-Hadji Ba, Cabral and Duncan Watmore among the new blood at the Stadium of Light, while former first-teamers Titus Bramble and Matt Kigallon have departed, with more soon to follow.

Karlsson began his career with Swedish outfit IFK Mariestad but was quickly signed up by IFK Gothenburg in 2010 as a 16-year-old.

He broke into the leading Swedish club’s first team aged just 17 and helped the club to win the Swedish Cup last month, beating Djurgardens 3-1 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in which former Sunderland man Tobias Hysen notched for Gothenburg.

Karlsson got on in the 83rd minute at the Friends Arena in Solna and played throughout extra time in the biggest game of his career so far.

He has been capped 11 times for his national side at Under-19 level.

Although touted as an out-and-out striker, he can play on the flank and his future at Sunderland is likely to be on the left wing.

Now he will join other new recruits to the club’s development squad – Altrincham striker Watmore and Le Havre midfielder Ba – in hoping to make progress towards first-team action next season.

Karlsson arrives at Sunderland with the best wishes of Gothenburg captain Hysen, the winger who was brought to the Stadium of Light by Niall Quinn in August 2006 and helped the club get promoted to the Premier League that season under Roy Keane.

Hysen said: “It will be great fun for him – it’s hard to say no to such an opportunity.

“I do not think there is anyone left from my time there and the only thing I can tell David is which areas are nice and stuff.”

Karlsson’s arrival is part of Sunderland’s plans to do as much of their transfer business as early as possible in the transfer window.

And Black Cats’ fans can expect plenty more coming and goings on the playing side in the days and weeks ahead.