Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cats Boss Issues a Warning to Striker; O'Neill in Warning to Black Cats Striker

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cats Boss Issues a Warning to Striker; O'Neill in Warning to Black Cats Striker

Article excerpt

MARTIN O'Neill has warned Fraizer Campbell he has got a "battle" on his hands to reclaim his first-team place, after tentative interest in the England striker failed to turn into anything concrete on deadline day, writes MARK DOUGLAS.

As expected, Sunderland's deadline day business was restricted to the loan signing of England under-21 left-back Danny Rose from Tottenham. He replaced Kieran Richardson, who spoke of his "excitement" at the prospect of a new challenge at Fulham.

The Black Cats were never likely to do much else after the substantial outlay on Adam Johnson and Steven Fletcher last week - but there were serious question marks over the future of Campbell, who has not been offered a new contract.

O'Neill admitted there had been enquiries about Campbell and did not dismiss the possibility of him, Ji Dong-Won or Connor Wickham going out on loan when the emergency loan window opens later this month.

But in the meantime, he expects him to rise to the challenge posed by Louis Saha and Fletcher.

"Fraizer has a battle on his hands - as have the players I have brought in," O'Neill said.

"I think everyone wants to be a part of it and I think there is a just a lift with the new players coming in to the club. The position are there for battle and we will see.

"When I came in here Fraizer had been injured for a long time. He came back and not too may come back from those injuries, and the good thing is that he is injury-free. "He came in a flurry last season which was really great but like most of us, he dropped a little bit after the Everton game. We have tried to regain it in pre-season. "There was a bit of tentative interest in Fraizer, as there was a number of my boys but I would not want to leave myself short with the number of strikers we have. …

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