Grant Leadbitter opens up on Sunderland return and his determination to make move happen
Grant Leadbitter says he is 'here to do a job' after completing an emotional return to Sunderland.
The 33-year-old has signed a two-and-a-half year deal to return to Wearside.
Leadbitter admits he has a sentimental attachment to his boyhood club and has watched on with disappointment as they fell into League One.
The midfielder insists it is now about getting down to business.
"I’m here to do a job, here to help the club," he told safc.com.
"That’s the most important message for me to get across. Obviously I love the club for sentimental reasons but I’ve come back here to do a job, to help the club. It’s one game at a time, keep winning games. That’s how you get promoted.
"It’s been really tough [the last couple of years]. I think every Sunderland fan feels that but all that has got to be put to bed.
"The manager and the players have done unbelievably to put that to bed, the excitement around the city is great and long may that continue."
Leadbitter was linked with a switch to Sunderland in the summer, something he admits could have been an option.
He went on to make eight appearances for Middlesbrough this season.
And when he learned the chance of a move was on the cards in January, he had a simple response.
"Make it happen [was my response]," he said.
"I wanted to come.
"I loved my time at Middlesbrough but all good things come to an end.
"This was an opportunity I wanted to take.
"It didn’t pan out [in the summer] but now the time is right and I’m so pleased it happened. For myself, my family, it’s been good."