SUNDERLAND 10 YEARS AGO: Stead and Brown to leave, Stokes not here for the money

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Here’s what the Echo was reporting on SAFC 10 years ago today.



JON Stead and Chris Brown are in transfer talks after Sunderland accepted bids for the pair.

 Both strikers were today in discussions with other clubs which look like ending their stay at Sunderland.

 Boss Roy Keane would not reveal which clubs the players were talking to, but Norwich City are believed to have a long standing interest in Brown.

 The manager did, however, confirm that Derby County were not the club talking to Stead.

 The former Blackburn Rovers frontman has enjoyed a successful loan spell at Pride Park and Rams boss Billy Davies had said he wanted to convert the move into a permanent one as he looks to maintain Derby’s push for promotion to the Premiership.

 But Keane told the Echo: “While I don’t want to go down the road of saying which clubs are talking to the players, I can tell you that it is not Derby County that are talking to Jon.

 “Derby County came in with a bid for Jon last week but it wasn’t the price we were looking for and we looking for and we tuned them down.”

 “The prospect of Stead moving to Derby falling through, also means that any potential deal for Rams centre-half Lewin Nyatanga, who had been on loan with the Black Cats, is now unlikely to happen.

 Keane explained: “The Stead-Nyatanga moves were always linked together in my mind and, as things stood, we wouldn’t have one without the other.

 “He’s a player that we were very impressed by during his time here, but, at this stage, we’ll just be looking to monitor the situation.”

 The arrival of £2million striker Anthony Stokes has been the catalyst for the strikers to be given freedom to move on.

 Keane said: “You’ve got to be fair to players and there’s no point in keeping them having around if they are not going to get opportunities. Anthony’s arrival strengthens us up front and the signing of Carlos Edwards on the right-wing means that we could now put Stephen Elliott in competition with the rest of the strikers.

 “And than means that Chris and Jon would only have limited chances.”

 “Another player who could be on the move is Sunderland midfielder Tommy Miller. Preston want him after he spent three-months on loan at Deepdale.

 But wages could prove to be a sticking point.

 Preston manager Paul Simpson has confirmed he definitely wants Miller but negotiations are on-going.

 Keane said: “I’ve been swapping messages with Paul Simpson over the last week and we are hopeful something might be done in that direction.

 “But there’s nothing to report yet and we’ll just have to wait and see whether anything happens.”


SUNDERLAND striker Anthony Stokes says money was not the deciding factor in his move to Wearside.

 The Arsenal youth product turned down Scottish champions Celtic and Premiership Charlton Athletic over the weekend in favour of joining Roy Keane’s Championship promotion chasers.

 And certainly the suggestions north of the border were that the money demands were a sticking point.

 But Stokes today hit back at those claims.

 He said: “My decision to come to Sunderland wasn’t about the money.

 “I haven’t got involved in that side of things.

 “I had talks with all three clubs and deciding where I would go was the hardest decision I have ever had to make.

 “But Niall Quinn and Roy Keane really impressed me with what they had to say about Sunderland and where they wanted to take the club.

 “They were very persistent but in the right kind of way.

 “They were very supportive of myself, no matter what I decided to do.

 “And I just got a good feeling about the club.”

 There have been suggestions that Stokes rook an offer of less money to join Sunderland than he would have got had he joined Charlton.

 But the striker wants to put all those discussion behind him now.

 He said: “It wasn’t an easy decision to make but I made it and I’m very happy with it.

 “Now I’m just looking forward to training with the lads, getting on with it and hopefully getting my first game as soon as possible.”