Danny Graham and Kristjaan Speakman react as striker makes early Sunderland departure

Danny Graham has left Sunderland six months ahead of the expiration of his Black Cats contract.

Monday, 1st February 2021, 7:37 pm
Sunderland striker Danny Graham

The 35-year-old has made 17 appearances since returning to the club for a second spell in the summer, scoring one goal in the Papa John’s Trophy.

Graham and the club have come to an agreement for him to leave the club, as he has fallen down the pecking order since Lee Johnson came to the club.

“At this point in my career, it is no secret that I want to be playing regular football, so I appreciate the understanding shown by the club in allowing me to pursue the opportunity to do this,” Graham said.

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"I would like to thank everyone at Sunderland, especially my team-mates and the supporters, for their backing throughout my two spells at the Stadium of Light.

"I wish you all the very best for the future.”

Johnson has strengthened his striking options with the signing of Ross Stewart, while Aiden O’Brien has also seen his gametime increase.

Lynden Gooch is also likely to play a central role under Johnson, leaving Graham’s likely gametime limited even if Will Grigg leaves on loan as expected.

Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman said: “We’ve had some really pragmatic conversations with Danny and there was a mutual understanding that this was the best avenue to take considering our activity in the transfer window and his desire to be involved more than he has been.

"He’s been a top professional and we wish him well for the future.”