Sunderland AFC deadline day RECAP: Surprise exits and Will Grigg saga ends on a a busy day at the Stadium of Light

Deadline day is finally upon us with all eyes on the future of Will Grigg before tonight’s 11pm deadline.

Monday, 1st February 2021, 11:18 pm

Ross County striker Ross Stewart has moved to the Stadium of Light and that is expected to allow Will Grigg to depart on loan.

Stewart’s arrival at the Academy of Light was confirmed over the weekend after the two clubs reached an agreement on a deal which could be worth up to £300,000.

Shrewsbury Town are leading the chase for Grigg, with Fleetwood Town and Oxford United also strongly linked.

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Sunderland are targeting a striker on deadline day.

Now Stewart has arrived on a permanent transfer that will bring a close to the club’s January business, with head coach Lee Johnson bringing in four new signings.

Sunderland drew 2-2 with Gillingham at the Stadium of Light at the weekend and travel to MK Dons in the Papa John’s Trophy on Tuesday evening, with a place in the semi-finals at stake.

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Sunderland Deadline Day blog RECAP: Will Grigg departs

Last updated: Monday, 01 February, 2021, 13:34

  • Will Grigg has sealed a loan move to MK Dons
  • Elliot Embleton has also departed on a temporary basis after signing a new contract
  • Danny Graham’s contract has been ended by mutual consent 

Hello and welcome to our deadline day blog. Sunderland are in the market for a new striker with Ross Stewart, from Ross County, close to striking a deal.

The deal could be worth up to £300,000 and see Will Grigg be allowed to leave the club, with Shrewsbury Town his likely destination. 

Sunderland have signed Ross Stewart

Lee Johnson says Ross Stewart has ‘all the attributes to succeed’ after becoming Sunderland’s fourth and likely final addition of the January transfer window.

Stewart has signed an initial two-and-a-half year deal on Wearside, with the club holding the option of another year.

The 24-year-old had six months left on his deal at Ross County, with the Black Cats paying an undisclosed fee.

Johnson says it is an addition for oth the short and the long term.

“I think Ross is a player that will be great for us in the short term, but he can also develop and improve over the long term,” he said.

"He’s at a good age, he’s very fit and quick, and he obviously has good height as well, so he has all attributes to succeed. We are very pleased to welcome him to the club.”

This is what Ross Stewart will bring to Sunderland

Stewart has told supporters that he will give ‘one hundred percent’ in every game.

“I’m very excited and I’m looking forward to the rest of the season,” he said.

"When the opportunity came to come to Sunderland, I just wanted to get it done as soon as I could.

"I will give one hundred percent in every game; I’m a very committed and hard-working player, and as a striker, hopefully I can bring a lot of goals to the club as well.”

Will there be any surprise additions today?

Johnson said after the 2-2 draw with Gillingham on Saturday that the arrival of a striker would in all likelihood conclude his incoming business.

The deal is likely to clear the way for Will Grigg to move out on loan for the rest of the season.

"In terms of incomings, we would be done I think with three if we got them.

"Outgoings, we'll have to wait and see but we want to trim the squad. Just to make sure that it is competitive but not too competitive, so players don't feel there's no chance of getting gametime.

"I’d be more than happy to have Will here but it does then become a case of how many strikers we have.

"Will wants to play every game, he wants to be closer to his family who are in Stafford, and we are probably going to have to accommodate that on this occasion if we get that extra man in."

Will Danny Graham stay at SAFC?

Insight from Phil Smith here: "Johnson has five strikers now that Stewart has arrived and speaking last Thursday, said that he had not discussed a possible exit with Danny Graham.

What’s the latest with Chris Maguire?

Insight from Phil Smith: "Chris Maguire was another player left out of the matchday squad on Saturday, and Johnson said afterwards that he was not sure whether he was a player who could leave before the deadline.

Fulham in for Josh Maja...

Fulham have been linked with a deadline day swoop for Josh Maja – and it could bring a major cash boost to Sunderland.

If they were to make a move on deadline day for the Bordeaux striker then that would be good news for Sunderland, who sold Maja in January 2019 and included a sell-on clause as part of the deal.

The sell-on clause is understood to be 10 per cent, as previously reported. Maja has previously been valued at upwards of £10million.

Latest on Will Grigg future

MK Dons are now reported to be favourites to land Will Grigg on loan today.

Shrewsbury Town had thought to be the frontrunners but reports now suggest MK Dons have moved ahead in the race to land Grigg before tonight’s 11pm deadline.

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