Carl Winchester reflects on Sunderland exit and sends brilliant message to 'incredible' fans

Carl Winchester has thanked Sunderland’s ‘incredible’ support after sealing a deadline-day loan switch to Shrewsbury Town.

Winchester has joined Tom Flanagan and Aiden O’Brien in Shropshire after accepting that his chances of regular game time were going to be limited on Wearside this season.

The 29-year-old said at this stage of his career he simply had to be playing regular games.

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However, he has reflected on his ‘unbelievable’ spell at Sunderland, where he became an immensely popular with fans and team-mates due to his wholehearted style.

Carl Winchester has joined Shrewsbury Town on loan

“I’m delighted to be here,” Winchester said.

"I spoke to a couple of the lads yesterday and they had nothing but good things to say about the club.

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“It was the end of the transfer window, I had a couple of conversations with the gaffer. He was keen to bring me here which was a real positive for me.

“At this stage in my career I just want to be playing games.

“I want to say thanks to Sunderland because they are a brilliant club, an outstanding club, a massive club but I just want to play games.

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"The manager has watched me at Cheltenham, Forest Green and Sunderland – he's watched me throughout my career and I’ve heard nothing but good things about him.

“It was unbelievable. If you’d have told me when I was at Forest Green that I would go to Sunderland and be part of a promotion-winning team I wouldn’t have believed you.

“It was something special. That club is amazing, the fans are incredible and it takes a type of player to go up there and play for them.

“You have to wear your heart on your sleeve and give everything because those fans give everything for that club.

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“They deserve to be in the Championship and even higher because the potential of that club is phenomenal.”

Winchester is out of contract at the end of the current season, though no final decision has been made on his long-term future at the Stadium of Light. In a statement confirming the move on deadline day Sunderland said they had the option to recall Winchester in January.