Sunderland star wants talks with Di Canio on future

Seb Larsson
Seb Larsson
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SEB LARSSON will seek clarity over his Sunderland future this summer, as he enters the final year of his contract at the Stadium of Light.

Only Simon Mignolet started more Premier League games for Sunderland last season than Larsson, who played 74 minutes in Sweden’s 1-0 friendly win over Macedonia last night.

But the former Birmingham City man is approaching the final 12 months of his three-year Sunderland contract, with no talks yet over extending his deal with the Black Cats.

Paolo Di Canio’s midfield options will be boosted this summer by the arrival of Basel’s out-of-contract enforcer Cabral - a move confirmed by the Swiss club over the weekend - while Fenerbache winger Milos Krasic is also on Sunderland’s radar.

And that has left Larsson unsure of his place in the pecking order after Di Canio’s overriding priority during his first two months at the helm was Premier League survival, rather than the long-term futures of his charges.

Larsson insists he is happy on Wearside and is not trying to orchestrate a move away, but hopes he can discover his place in Di Canio’s plans during pre-season.

“I have not thought about the future, I have one year left and have a new coach.” said Larsson. “He (Di Canio) came into a tight situation and was focused on taking the points we needed.

“It (the future) could possibly be something to discuss during the summer or at the beginning of next season.

“There have already been a number of changes and it is clear that there will be changes in the squad, particularly because we had an extremely thin squad this year.

“I felt I got a lot of confidence when he came in, but I do not know his ideas for me for next year, it may emerge.

“I went as a Bosman last time and it is perhaps not very likely to happen twice in a row. I like it (at Sunderland) and I’m not chasing a move in any way.”

Larsson was critical of his own form during the campaign and describes last season as the toughest of his career.

What started off as a season where Sunderland were aiming for the top 10, descended into one where the Black Cats were battling for survival.

But Larsson hopes the encouraging signs from the early days of Di Canio’s reign can spill over into next season.

“I know I got a lot of confidence in him, so let’s see what happens next season,” added Larsson.

“We were in a bad situation and his only job was to save the club and he did.

“It was the most difficult season in my career. Both as a team and personally it was disappointing, I can’t lie about that.

“But I was glad the season ended positively and we can take that into next season.”