Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tigers' Eyes on McShane Signing

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tigers' Eyes on McShane Signing

Article excerpt

Byline: Mark Douglas

THE chances of Paul McShane returning to Sunderland during the January transfer window have receded after the Black Cats gave the defender the green light to play in the FA Cup third round this weekend.

Ricky Sbragia had hinted last week that McShane may be recalled to provide defensive cover in the second half of the season but Sunderland's newlyinstalled boss is yet to contact Hull counterpart Phil Brown about ending his loan spell early.

That means McShane is in the Tigers squad to face Newcastle and barring any last minute phone-call from Wearside today, he will play in the third round clash - sending the clearest indication yet that Sbragia has concluded that he does not need the defender back.

That news will be welcomed at the KC Stadium, where Brown is desperate to keep hold of McShane. Indeed, the Tigers boss is considering whether to make the loan move permanent during the January transfer window - although he will need to find around pounds 2m to secure the defender on a long-term basis.

McShane struggled to make the step from the Championship to the Premier League in Sunderland colours last season but he has been much-improved since moving to Hull during the close season.

The terms of his deal do allow Sunderland to cancel the loan whenever they wish and while Brown admits that is still a possibility, he is hopeful that he does not receive a call from Sbragia.

"I haven't heard anything from Ricky Sbragia and until I speak to him I can't answer questions about Paul McShane and his future," Brown said.

"It's their business if they do pull him back, that's the contract that we agreed as far as Paul McShane was concerned.

"It will disappointing if that was the case because I would like to keep Paul McShane for the remainder of the season. But Sunderland's needs are Sunderland's needs and I can't interfe re ."

Sorting out the status of the eleven players that Sunderland sent out on loan was one of Sbragia's first priorities upon being handed the manager's role on a full-time basis, and he has already moved to strengthen his first-team squad with the recall of Michael Chopra, as well as fringe men Roy O'Donovan and goalkeeper Trevor Carson. …

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