Sunderland boss delighted to have John O’Shea on board for Championship campaign

John O'Shea is staying for another season with Sunderland. Picture by Frank Reid.
John O'Shea is staying for another season with Sunderland. Picture by Frank Reid.
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Simon Grayson was delighted to extend John O’Shea’s stay at the Stadium of Light, with the new Sunderland manager keen to use his vast experience.

The 36-year-old was out of contract at the end of last season but has signed a new 12-month deal to remain on Wearside despite interest from other Championship clubs.

Wolves were among four clubs tracking the Republic of Ireland international.

But O’Shea has agreed terms on a new deal and new boss Grayson believes the veteran former Manchester United defender has a key role to play this season, on and off the pitch.

“I am delighted,” said Grayson.

“He is still a current Ireland international who can play a key part with the experience and we will integrate some of the younger players in and around the first team. He can be the guidance for them.

“It is good for him he is going to stay and he can be a soundboard for me as well because of his experience, where he has played and what he can bring to the group in general.

“I have signed John O’Shea again because I want him to be here for a successful Championship campaign.”

Sunderland’s hierarchy were eager to keep the experienced centre-half to provide much-needed continuity heading into the Championship campaign and the new deal sees O’Shea extend his stay into a seventh season.

Swedish midfielder Seb Larsson has been offered a new deal too, but the club is still waiting to hear whether he will be staying, with interest from other clubs including Premier League Brighton.

Several other players left at the end of the season, including Victor Anichebe, Jan Kirchhoff, Joleon Lescott and Steven Pienaar.

Sunderland are in the middle of a major overhaul, with Jordan Pickford having departed for Everton, Fabio Borini for AC Milan and Jermain Defoe for Bournemouth.