At the end of each campaign EFL clubs have to submit the list of players they plan to release and those who they wish to retain by a set deadline.
For the 2021/22 season that deadline fell on Saturday, May 21, the same day as Sunderland’s 2-0 win over Wycombe Wanderers in the League One play-off final.
Yet the Black Cats’ participation in the match at Wembley means they have four extra days to make any contractual decisions – until Wednesday, May 25.
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This does not mean all contracts have to be signed by this date, and the Black Cats will simply need to indicate which players they will be offering new terms to. Negotiations over contracts can then take as long as is required.
Sunderland can also choose when they make their retained and released list public, as the aforementioned deadline is only for when lists need to be submitted to the EFL.
The Echo understands Sunderland are planning to announce their retained list by the middle of this week, and will hold contract talks with players on Tuesday.
Patrick Roberts also signed a short-term deal until the end of the season in January, yet there is a club option for that to be extended.