Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cats Look to Build on Solid Duo

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cats Look to Build on Solid Duo

Article excerpt

Byline: By Paul Gilder

Sunderland boss Roy Keane is planning to build the club's Premiership assault around Nyron Nosworthy and Jonny Evans after moving to keep his first-choice defensive partnership intact for the foreseeable future.

The Black Cats boss last night awarded Nosworthy a three-year contract extension that will keep him on Wearside until 2010, but just as significant was his admission for the first time that he is hopeful Sir Alex Ferguson can be persuaded to sanction a deal for Evans that will enable him to keep the teenager in the North-East beyond this summer.

The Northern Ireland international is scheduled to rejoin Manchester United when his loan spell on Wearside finishes and, although there seems little chance that Ferguson will consider selling him, Keane will pursue another temporary transfer with confidence.

The 35-year-old will have to wait until the summer to finalise the young defender's future. But he has wasted little time in tying Nosworthy to the club following the completion of contract talks first revealed in The Journal last week. "I'm very happy to have extended my contract and I hope I can keep playing well and hopefully get another one," said the popular Londoner last night.

"The Sunderland fans have made me feel so welcome and I just want to keep doing well for them and the club."

Nosworthy looked to face an uncertain future on Wearside following Keane's appointment in August but, since his switch to centre-half, a player who had struggled to convince in his preferred position at right-back has proved his worth and convinced Keane of his capabilities in breathtaking fashion. The 26-year-old's impressive performances have come alongside Evans and, although the Black Cats boss has played down his chances of persuading Ferguson to loan the 19-year-old out again next season in recent weeks, his position appears to have softened. …

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