The signing of James McFadden in October was very little to shout about, and his performances have barely even warranted comment in the fleeting substitute appearances he has made. Yet for some reason it looks as though James McFadden is set for an extended stay on Wearside.
In speaking with the Shields Gazette today, Martin O'Neill suggested that a new deal was in the works for him, and he intends on loaning out the former Scotland international;
His contract has expired now, and we're having a look at it again. Obviously James wants to play some games, but there's people keeping him out of the team.
Just recently, it's as fit as he's been, and he's been training every day without any problems. From that aspect, it's good.
We'll have a look at it, and we need to agree something with the agent and player of course.
But it might be a case of bringing him back, letting him go on loan to the Championship to get a game or two, and ensuring he is fresh for the back end of the season and properly match-fit.
That's a possibility, but it's a situation I'm reviewing.
You'd hope that any extension of McFadden's deal is no longer than the summer. If it is for a year or 18-months then it's safe to assume that McFadden has some compromising images of O'Neill stashed away.
While McFadden hasn't been a disaster of a signing owing to the fact nobody had any expectation of him, he's contributed absolutely nothing so far and doesn't look remotely like changing the game in his very brief substitute appearances. The whole move seems to have been purely of benefit to him and not to us.
The only possible hope we can glean from loaning him out is if someone gives us a fee for his services, in which case we might actually make some of our money back on him.