Sunderland AFC transfer news RECAP: Defender linked with summer move as Kyril Louis-Dreyfus makes off-field changes
Sunderland will be hoping to record their fourth successive league victory when they travel to the Alexandra Stadium to face Crewe this weekend – while there has been plenty going on off the pitch.
It’s been a significant few weeks for the Black Cats who have moved upto fifth in the League One table while reaching the final of the Papa John’s Trophy.
The completion of Kyril Louis-Dreyfus’ takeover deal has also raised spirits on Wearside – scroll down for the latest SAFC news:
RECAP: Sunderland AFC transfer news (25 February)
Last updated: Thursday, 25 February, 2021, 17:39
- Sunderland moved upto fifth in League One following a 2-0 win over Fleetwood this week.
- Lee Johnson’s side are now preparing for this weekend’s match against Crewe.
- Midfielder Josh Scowen could return for the match following an injury.
- New chairman Kyril Louis-Drefyus has been making changes behind the scenes.
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Tranmere chairman confirms trophy date
Tranmere chairman Mark Palios has confirmed the date of next month’s Papa John’s Trophy final against Sunderland.
Palios wanted the match to be moved to a later date to allow fans to attend the fixture but concluded that won’t be possible.
The match at Wembley will therefore take place on Sunday, March 14 (3pm kick-off).
Methven’s Josh Maja admission
Ex-Sunderland director Charlie Methven says that Josh Maja should not be blamed for the manner of his exit from the Stadium of Light – as the striker continues to shine in the Premier League.
Maja rejoined former club Fulham on loan in the January window and has caught the eye in the top flight, with Scott Parker’s side looking to mount a remarkable escape from relegation danger.
The 22-year-old’s brace against Everton earlier this month prompted talk on Wearside to turn back to the winter of 2019, when Maja was allowed to join Bordeaux after talks over a new contract failed to reach a positive conclusion.
But former director Methven, who still retains a minority shareholding in the club, says the finger should not be pointed at Maja himself for the exit.
Will Sunderland make a permanent move for Dion Sanderson?
Lee Johnson says Sunderland would ‘of course’ be interested in striking a permanent deal for Dion Sanderson this summer, but says it will be up to Wolves to decide whether the youngster is available.
Reports in the national media on Wednesday said that the Black Cats were ‘exploring the possibility’ of signing the 21-year-old at the end of the season.
Sanderson is becoming an increasingly key player for Sunderland’s new Head Coach, and has been an integral part of their recent resurgence.
Johnson believes Sanderson has a big future in the game and the Black Cats would no doubt be one of many clubs interested were he available this summer.
Read his full thoughts below:
Lee Johnson's clear message as he responds to claims of a summer move for Wolves youngster Dion Sanderson
Lee Johnson says Sunderland would 'of course' be interested in striking a permanent deal for Dion Sanderson this summer, but says it will be up to Wolves to decide whether the youngster is available.
Lee Johnson has been discussing Kyril Louis-Dreyfus’ vision
And it turns out it played a key role in luring the head coach to Wearside!
Midfielder Josh Scowen could return for this weekend’s trip to Crewe after missing the win over Fleetwood with a slight hamstring issue.
The Sunderland Head Coach was boosted by the return of Oliver Younger to the squad on Tuesday night, but Tom Flanagan is not expected to be available until some time next week.
January signing Ross Stewart is nearing his debut as he steps up his recovery from a hamstring injury, but Johnson has vowed not to rush him with his other striking options in good form.
Bailey Wright remains a fortnight away from a return but Johnson does believe that he will be in contention for the Papa John’s Trophy final against Tranmere Rovers.
While Denver Hume remains some way from returning, Johnson is confident that he will feature at some stage in the promotion push.
Louis-Drefyus on his long-term plans
“I truly believe we can get promoted this season because we have a very strong squad, a good manager and the league is still open to play,” said the new Sunderland owner.
“However, we need to follow our long-term plan. We can’t panic if we fall short this year.
“We believe the club needs to be rebuilt from the foundation and it starts with the appointments of Kristjaan [Speakman], Steve [Davison] and Lee [Johnson]. There will be multiple appointments following in the next weeks. We’ve had the academy leadership team announced this week and we slowly start to rebuild.”
Changes behind the scenes
New chairman Kyril Louis-Drefyus has already been making changes behind the scenes at Sunderland.
The 23-year-old has moved to appoint two close allies as directors at the club - Igor Levin and Patrick Treuer.
In a number of significant updates posted at Companies House, it was also confirmed that neither Stewart Donald nor Juan Sartori remain as directors at the club.
Both have retained a minority shareholding in the club alongside Charlie Methven as a result of the deal that has seen Louis-Dreyfus become controlling shareholder and Chairman.
Louis-Drefyus gave his first interview to the club’s website earlier this week and said he’s targeting long-term success at Sunderland - after what he described as ‘asset-stripping’.
It’s been a great couple of weeks for Sunderland following three successive league wins, a semi-final victory and the completion of Kyril Louis-Drefyus’ takeover deal.
The Black Cats will be looking to continue their momentum when they travel to Crewe this weekend, with Lee Johnson’s side upto fifth in the League One table.
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