Jack Ross discusses the futures of Lee Cattermole and Bryan Oviedo amid transfer links

Jack Ross has insisted that Lee Cattermole and Bryan Oviedo remain part of his plans - despite speculation linking the duo with an exit.

Tuesday, 14th August 2018, 4:03 pm
Updated Tuesday, 14th August 2018, 4:08 pm
Jack Ross has been discussing this man's future

As two of the club's highest earners, the pair were tipped to leave this summer as Sunderland's new regime look to cut costs following back-to-back relegations.

Speculation continues to rage on regarding their futures, with Oviedo having been linked with Club Brugge and more recent reports suggesting that Bordeaux are keen on Cattermole.

READ: Max Power on Jack Ross, Lee Cattermole - and why Sunderland remind him of title-winning WiganBut the duo have remained on Wearside and featured in the Black Cats' 1-1 draw at Luton Town on Saturday as Ross praised their conduct throughout his time in charge so far.

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"When I took this job I tended to shy away from taking too much opinion before I took it," he said.

"I wanted to gauge everyone myself and those two players have trained every day.

"Bryan had an extended break and I got off on a good foot because I gave him longer!

LIVE: Transfer latest from the Stadium of Light as Jack Ross eyes a striker"They both trained today (Thursday) and did really well. I think they’re enjoying it and they enjoy the environment they’ve created.

Naturally, all of these players looked at did they want to play in League One and what challenges would that bring, but the challenge for me was to give them something that made them want to be involved in what we’re doing.

"I’ve taken every player as I’ve found them and those two there have been absolutely no problem to me."

Concerns may be raised about how the club can afford to keep the duo given their third tier status - but Ross is keen to focus purely on the footballing merits of the pair.

"There’s a number of players that, it’s obvious with where we’re at contractually, that it’s going to be a big ask for the club to carry forward," he admitted, when discussing Cattermole's role in the side.

MORE: Big rule changes to the Carabao Cup explained ahead of Sunderland's tie"We’ve managed to do a lot in a short space of time that has helped us to be in a healthier position, but again Stewart (Donald) would likely be able to give you more clarity on how that affects us moving forward.

"From my perspective, in terms of looking solely on football, he remains very much part of the squad at present."