Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: Cats Spend Big in Time of Change; Report Reveals Fees for Agents

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: Cats Spend Big in Time of Change; Report Reveals Fees for Agents

Article excerpt

Byline: STUART RAYNER

SUNDERLAND'S reputation as the Football League's big spenders was further strengthened by the league's biannual publication of its spending on agents' fees, writes STUART RAYNER.

Unlike their Premiership counterparts, Football League clubs are required to publish the amount of money spent on agents fees every six months. The latest statistics, which cover the period from July 1 to December 31 2006, show the Black Cats to be the secondhighest spenders behind another former Premier League side, Southampton.

The Wearsiders spent pounds 594,500 in that period, more than 10% of the Championship's total outlay of pounds 5,489,599. Even so, their figure was dwarfed by Southampton's pounds 842,533 outlay.

The two clubs jointly hold the record for the most transactions in the period, carrying out 52 each.

The amounts include all buys, sales, updated and cancelled contracts committed to, irrespective of when the money was due to be paid.

Sunderland's hectic transfer activity followed a change of manager in August. Niall Quinn reluctantly took over as manager shortly before the start of the season and with the transfer window closing days before Roy Keane's arrival he felt compelled to make a number forays into the market.

Of the new faces Quinn brought in, only Darren Ward and Tobias Hysen have been able to establish themselves in the first team under Keane. Andy Gray, Kelvin Davis, Julio Arca, Christian Bassila, Kevin Kyle and George McCartney were among the players who left in the second half of last year. Kenny Cunningham, Ward, Hysen, William Mocquet, Arnau Caldentey Riera, Clive Clarke, Stanislav Varga, Graham Kavanagh, David Connolly, Ross Wallace, Dwight Yorke, Liam Miller, Lewin Nyatanga and Marton Fulop were new players brought to the Stadium of Light in that time. A host of players were also offered extended deals.

Since the end of 2006 the Black Cats have carried out further wheeling and dealing, the most high-profile being the arrival of pounds 2m Anthony Stokes, the club's most expensive signing in four years. …

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