Phil Smith: Why the end of Sunderland's Bryan Oviedo saga should herald a new transfer dawn
One of the summer’s longest transfer sagas came to an end on Monday as Sunderland and Bryan Oviedo finally brought their time together to an end.
On the face of it, this was yet another disastrous signing.
Sunderland made a tidy profit on Patrick van Aanholt in January 2017 but much of that was immediately reinvested in Oviedo.
His wages were significant and in retrospect, it was a questionable decision given the financial position we now know the club was in at the time.
His departure on a free puts this right up there with Sunderland’s biggest ever transfer losses.
The reaction towards Oviedo, though, was largely positive.
That speaks volumes of Oviedo’s conduct throughout his time on Wearside, the clear respect he had for the club and its supporters.
No manager ever questioned his application throughout the tumbles through the league and it was no surprise to see his new boss at FC Copenhagen praise his choice to move for football, not money.
Few will wish the Costa Rican anything but the best in his new venture.
On the pitch, Oviedo didn’t stand out in either of the last two seasons, as he surely should have done.
His conduct shamed some of those from that Premier League era, and his amicable departure underlined that.
It’s probably fair, though, to hope that the bar for successful signings ends up a little higher than that in coming years.