LiveSunderland AFC transfer news RECAP: Contract talks set to kick-off with key man, Grant Leadbitter injury latest plus youngsters beaten by Aston Villa

It’s the start of another new week at the Stadium of Light, and another which Sunderland fans enter feeling optimistic.

Monday, 1st March 2021, 4:56 pm

While a draw at Crewe on Saturday was far from an ideal result, the nature of the result – which saw Jordan Jones and Chris Maguire net two late stunning strikes to salvage a point – left fans feeling upbeat.

And the fixtures keep coming thick and fast with Swindon Town next up on Tuesday evening.

We’ll have all the build-up to that game in our live blog, plus any updates on Grant Leadbitter’s injury which saw him forced off at Crewe.

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The latest transfer, contract and injury news from Sunderland AFC
The latest transfer, contract and injury news from Sunderland AFC

There may also be updates on the contract front, with weekend reports suggesting that the Black Cats are keen to tie down some key men to new long-term contracts.

And with Kyril Louis-Dreyfus continuing to reshape the club behind the scenes, there could yet be some more major developments.

But whatever happens today, you can follow it all in our blog below:

RECAP: Sunderland AFC transfer news (March 1)

Last updated: Monday, 01 March, 2021, 16:56

  • Sunderland welcome Swindon Town to the Stadium of Light on Tuesday evening.
  • The Black Cats dramatically claimed a point at Crewe on Saturday.
  • Lee Johnson lost Grant Leadbitter to injury during the clash.
  • Kyril Louis-Dreyfus was once again in attendance - as he continues to reshape the club.
  • Sunderland’s under-23 side were beaten 3-2 by Aston Villa at the Academy of Light earlier today.

Thanks for joining us today

We’re signing off for today but have plenty more Black Cats news, analysis and more on the SAFC section of the Echo website.

See you soon.

Gardiner offered Sunderland scholarship

South Shields academy forward Harry Gardiner has signed a two-and-a-half-year scholarship with Sunderland.

Gardiner joined Shields’ academy in 2020 and caught the attention of several professional clubs.

Sunderland offered the forward an eight-week trial before signing him on a long-term deal.

South Shields academy manager Wess Brown said: “We were only a short part of Harry’s football journey but what a pleasure it was to be the final stepping stone on his journey to a professional club.

“We are very happy to see Harry reach another level, but on the other hand sad to lose such a great player and person.

“The first time I watched Harry I knew he would be perfect for our scholarship programme.

“He is a quiet lad on and off the pitch but his intelligence shouts louder than any player I’ve seen for a long time.

“Harry has a bright future and has excelled in our environment, and I hope he does the same at Sunderland AFC.

“We wish him all the luck in the world on his new venture.”

Stephen Wearne pulled a goal back for Sunderland but it ended 3-2 to Aston Villa at the Academy of Light.

Villa take the lead

Sunderland lead at the Academy of Light!

Josh Hawkes has put Sunderland Under-23s 1-0 up against Aston Villa.

Cotterill re-admitted to hospital

Shrewsbury Town boss Steve Cotterill has been re-admitted to hospital after suffering from Covid-pneumonia.

The 56-year-old tested positive for Covid-19 in January and spent a spell in intensive care before his condition improved.

Cotterill had a period of rehabilitation and remote working with his coaching staff and players, yet it’s since been confirmed he has been re-admitted to hospital.

A Shrewsbury statement said: “Following extensive treatment for Covid-19, Steve returned home from the hospital on February 16th. However, Town’s Manager has returned to the hospital over the weekend as he is suffering from Covid-pneumonia.

“The Club wishes Steve all the best in his recovery and will not be making any further comments at this time.”

Shrewsbury’s assistant manager Aaron Wilbraham said:”For somebody who has never missed a day’s work in his life, this will hit the Manager really hard. He’s one of the strongest and toughest people I know, and I know he’ll get through this Covid-pneumonia.”

Half-Time at the Academy of Light

Dion Sanderson reports

Sheffield United have set their sights on Wolves defender Dion Sanderson, according to reports.

Footballer Insider are claiming the Blades have been alerted by Sanderson’s impressive performances while on loan at Sunderland and are keeping tabs on the 21-year-old.

Black Cats boss Lee Johnson was asked about the player last week and said Sunderland would like to sign Sanderson permanently, but admitted a decision will rest with Wolves.

Still goalless at the Academy of Light

Under-23 side in action against Aston Villa

Here’s Sunderland’s under-23 side to face Aston Villa this afternoon (1pm kick-off).

We’ll have live updates in today’s blog.

Lambert leaves Ipswich

Another one of Sunderland’s promotion rivals Ipswich have parted company with manager Paul Lambert by mutual consent.

It was reported last week that Ipswich are set to be taken over by a group of American investors, who will appoint Paul Cook as their new boss.

More behind the scenes change at the Stadium of Light!

Finance director Angela Lowes has left the club.

Phil Smith has the full story:

Sunderland confirm further boardroom departure after Kyril Louis-Dreyfus takeover

Finance Director Angela Lowes has stepped down from her role on the board at Sunderland AFC with immediate effect.

A big blow for one of Sunderland’s promotion rivals...

Doncaster Rovers have seen manager Darren Moore head to Sheffield Wednesday.

The South Yorkshire side remain in contention for the play-offs despite some disappointing results of late, and have now appointed Andy Butler as manager until the end of the current campaign.

Sunderland's promotion rivals Doncaster Rovers rocked by manager departure

Sunderland’s League One promotion rivals Doncaster Rovers have been rocked by the loss of their manager.

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