Steve Bruce reveals why Sam Winnall snubbed Sunderland on transfer deadline day
Sunderland's pursuit of strikers on transfer deadline day was well-documented - with Sheffield Wednesday's Sam Winnall one potential target.
While the Black Cats eventually secured a deal for top target Will Grigg, they had previously been linked with a host of lower league strikers as Jack Ross looked to bolster his attacking arsenal ahead of the season run-in.
And Winnall was one of several names mooted for a potential switch to Wearside on a hectic transfer deadline day.
The 28-year-old has strong pedigree in League One - having netted 37 times over two seasons for Barnsley - and has impressed in the Championship with both the Owls and Derby County.
But with Winnall making just four appearances for Wednesday this season, all of them from the bench, the Championship club were thought to be willing to part with the striker on a temporary basis.
Sunderland and several other clubs were believed to be interested, but a deal failed to materialise.
And Steve Bruce has now revealed that Winnall snubbed the chance to leave Hillsborough - and instead wished to fight for his place with the Owls after some unfortunate injuries in recent months.
Bruce told the Sheffield Star: "There were one or two enquiries about Sam but, to be fair to him, he wanted to stay and prove himself to ourselves.
"That was his response and that is fine by me. I have no problem with that.
"He is working extremely hard in training. He needs a few games, of course, but he is looking good again.
"He has had a tough time with injuries. He had an awful knee injury. Hopefully his injuries are behind him now."