Emanuele Giaccherini has told the Italian media that he wants to stay at Sunderland and believes he will be better for an eye-opening and challenging first season in England.
The Italian has had a sporadic season and found himself on the bench for large spells, but he certainly contributed to the great escape and at times has looked a really lovely footballer. It is a season he is keen to build upon. He told reporters:
My future? Yes I really want to play here again. I want to stay and do even better, with the experience accumulated.
I still have a three year contract, I'm fine where I am, but let's see what will happen. I will speak with [Gus] Poyet and we will decide together.
I would say that at first it went well, perhaps not great, but overall it has been a good year. Eventually we reached our objective - we are safe from relegation. Through thick and thin.
We reached the final of the League Cup, against Manchester City, we were in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, in short, we fought on several fronts.
The truth is that this Sunderland has been dismantled and rebuilt. We had to play with many teammates not knowing each other. We could not find the mechanisms to our play and Di Canio paid for this.
I ended up in the stands, but I have always worked in silence. I decided to bide my time. Then things came to me - against Chelsea it was the turning point for our survival.
Then a goal and assist against Cardiff. In short, I gave my contribution to our stay in the Premier League.
The Premier League? I'm honest - I did not follow it much when I was in Turin. Now I can say for sure, this is a more difficult competition - there are players and teams of the absolute highest calibre.
Manchester United are seventh here not just as a result of their own errors, but for the great competition there is. The Premier League is really exciting.
Whether or not Giaccherini and the season in general has been a success depends, I suppose, on your point ov view and expectations. He hasn't pulled up any trees but he has been a valuable player in terms of impact. It was his performance from the bench which arguably changed the game that changed the season.
There is definitely a player in there, and he wouldn't be the first player to have a tough first season in England before eventually proving himself. I'd persist personally.
The big question is whether or not there is a place for him, tactically, in a Poyet team. You sense that, if he is going to stick around, it may just be dependant upon him being able to adjust to the demands of playing in central midfield in England.