O’Neill happy with Sunderland’s squad strength

Ahmed Elmohamady.
Ahmed Elmohamady.
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DANNY Graham’s transfer deadline day signing triggered Ahmed Elmohamady’s return to Hull, Sunderland boss Martin O’Neill has revealed.

The Egyptian winger has returned to the Championship outfit for the remainder of the campaign after spending the first half of the season on loan to the Humberside outfit.

But the fresh loan was only authorised once Sunderland were sure that Graham’s £5m move was going to come off.

O’Neill told the Echo: “We had to bring Ahmed back because we needed bodies at a time when other players were going out and we also had injuries.

“It wasn’t ideal for him because he was playing regularly at Hull and enjoying his football but you can’t run a club just purely on what each particular player wants.

“He’s someone who could do a job for us and things had reached a stage where we needed him.

“But signing Danny meant that effectively Ahmed could go back to Hull becaue the new signings means we now have sufficient cover and we also have players set to return from injury soon.”

Sunderland brought in three new players during the transfer window – Alfred N’Diaye and Kader Mangane joining ex-Swansea striker Graham at the club.

But the incoming players were more than balanced out by the departures of David Meyler, Fraizer Campbell, Ji Dong-won, Louis Saha and Elmohamady over the course of the the month.

Despite the net loss of two players though, O’Neill says he is content with the squad he now has to tackle the final third of the season.

“In an ideal world you’ll always want more but I’m happy with the signings we have made,” he told the Echo.

“They are good additions to the squad and I’m sure they will prove their worth to us over the remainder of the season.”