Poyet goes back to Brighton to bring Buckley to Black Cats
Sunderland, 11/4 chances with Coral for a top 10 finish, have signed Brighton winger Will Buckley on a three-year deal from Black Cats boss Gus Poyet’s former club.
The 24-year-old joins the Wearside outfit for an undisclosed fee, reportedly £2.5m, and this is the second time in his career that the Uruguayan coach has brought him to a club. Poyet paid Watford £1m for the player in June 2011.
Playing over 100 games for the Seagulls, Buckley is another high-profile departure from the Championship club. Amex boss Sami Hyypia has seen last season’s top scorer Leonardo Ulloa sold to promoted Leicester City for £8m.
It’s the second time in as many transfer windows Poyet has gone back to old side Brighton to poach a player. Sunderland splashed around £3.5m for Scotland cap and midfielder Liam Bridcutt in January.
Buckley becomes Poyet’s seventh summer signing, as he rebuilds the Black Cats to give the squad his stamp. Romanian goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon, full backs Patrick van Aanholt and Billy Jones, midfield pair Jordi Gomez and Jack Rodwell, and Argentine defender Santiago Vergini have all ben brought to Sunderland as well.
The Black Cats have lost Phil Bardsley, Jack Colback, Carlos Cuellar, Andea Doessena, Craig Gardner, David Vaughan and Keiren Westwood this summer, among others, all on free transfers.
Following last season’s brush with relegation, Poyet is understandably keen to strengthen his attacking options, and remains in protracted negotiations over a permanent transfer for Italian forward Fabio Borini. Liverpool are holding out for a reported £14m following a successful loan spell at the Stadium of Light.
Such sweeping change is done with the intention of avoiding similar struggles this term. The Borini buy, should it supplement Buckley, will round the Sunderland squad out. It’s 9/2 that they are relegated from the Premier League.