Kristjaan Speakman explains Sunderland's loan decision on Carl Winchester

Carl Winchester has joined Shrewsbury Town on loan.

The popular and versatile 29-year-old has been unable to break into the Championship side on Wearside this season, though his progress of late was affected by.a back injury.

As such he has joined Tom Flanagan and Aiden O’Brien at the New Meadow, with Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman saying the club respected his desire for regular football.

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“Carl is at a stage of his career whereby he wants to be playing regular football and after concluding our incoming business, we agreed that it suited both parties for him to spend the remainder of the season on loan,” Speakman said.

Sunderland's Carl Winchester has made a loan move to Shrewsbury Town

"He played an important part in our promotion last season and he will be missed by players and staff alike. We know Carl is a popular player amongst our fan base and like us, I’m sure our supporters appreciate the contribution he has made to the club throughout his time at the Stadium of Light.”

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The loan runs until the end of the season at which point Winchester’s current contract expires, raising the possibility that he could have played his last game for the club.

However, Sunderland have confirmed that they do have the option to recall him in the January window.

Winchester made 45 appearances for the Black Cats last season, scoring three goals en route to promotion at Wembley. He excelled both at right back under Lee Johnson and then as the right-sided centre back in a three under Alex Neil as the club’s form turned for the better.