Yes there was a moment where they wanted me, but now it is in the past. I am happy to go to Sunderland. I like the atmosphere of the club and the supporters.Le Havre midfielder El-Hadji Ba has been speaking about his move to Sunderland, what inspired him to make the switch and more as he opened up to French football site GFN.
It's long been understood that the French youth international midfielder will join the club, with reports going back as far as January that he would do so.
La Manip, as he playfully refers to himself in the interview said that Sunderland's interest is long-standing, and he'd set his sights on joining the club long before Paolo Di Canio was appointed;
Sunderland have wanted me for ages, even before I turned pro. That is what tipped the decision in their favour.
I had been convinced to join Sunderland before he [Di Canio] was appointed this year.
There was a moment where Tottenham wanted me, but now it is in the past. I am happy to go to Sunderland. I like the atmosphere of the club and the supporters.
When asked what he knew of Di Canio, he said he knows little, but seems like a person that Ba will get along with just fine;
I know he is a manager who likes to win, like me.
There's also been a fair bit of discussion about what he's like as a player. Some see him as a holding midfielder, others an attacking one who could play in a three behind one up front. The truth seems to lie somewhere in between, but Ba himself sees himself in the mould of another Premier League player;
The only player who inspires me is Abou Diaby because I like his style of play a lot.
El-Hadji Ba should be signed up pretty soon, having already confirmed himself to L'Equipe that a 3-year deal has been penned, despite the club not actually saying anything yet (at time of writing).
The 20-year old is likely be given a few chances this preseason before ultimately continuing his development in Kevin Ball's Under-21 side. You can read more about Ba with some of our reports and interviews HERE and HERE.