Sunderland for sale: Niall Quinn denies involvement in consortium linked with takeover

Niall Quinn in his playing days for Sunderland.
Niall Quinn in his playing days for Sunderland.
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Niall Quinn has moved to distance himself from reports linking the former striker with another takeover of Sunderland AFC.

Reports in the national press claimed Quinn was fronting a group - including Irish and a North East businessman - who had held talks with owner Ellis Short over a possible takeover.

Sunderland owner Ellis Short.

Sunderland owner Ellis Short.

But Quinn has moved to distance himself and says he is not involved in any such deal.

The former Republic of Ireland international, who was on Wearside recently on business, says he hopes Sunderland can turn around their current fortunes.

While Quinn is understood to have had some contact with a group several months ago interested in Sunderland he has stressed he is not looking to front any consortium or return to the Stadium of Light.

Short is looking to sell the club, which has debts of more than £110million, and in danger of successive relegations but no deal is thought to be close.

"Not true," Quinn told Irish news agency RTE when asked about the reports.

"Sadly someone jumped the gun there a little bit and probably felt I was doing more.

"I was actually in Sunderland a couple of times but it was nothing to do with football and maybe that’s where it came from.

"At the same time I, like everybody else, hopes the situation gets better there very quickly.

"There are one or two people who are meant to be interested in buying the club, I hear all that. I’m the same as the fans but we’ll just see how it plays.

"No, I’ve nothing special to tell you there, I just hope they get out of it.

"I’m gone six years now so I haven’t left anything behind me in terms of my support for the club. I’d like to see it turned around, I just don’t think it’s going to be me."

Quinn headed up the Drumaville Consortium's bid to land control at Sunderland back in 2006, when they convinced Bob Murray to part with the club for around £10million.

Short then purchased the club off the Irish consortium in 2009.