So, Steven Pienaar?
Aye. You know that lad who was canny for Everton in about 2009? Well, he's signed a one year deal after an initial trial with the club.
It seems strange because in Wahbi Khazri, Adnan Januzaj, Duncan Watmore, Lynden Gooch, Fabio Borini and even Jeremain Lens, we're not exactly light on attacking midfielders. If we were to bring one in, you'd think it would be because we'd signed someone at their peak, not a 34 year old, so I think Sunderland fans will be forgiven for not rushing out to get the South African's name printed on the back of their shiny new home shirt.
One area where we are pretty light though, is in centre midfield. Lee Cattermole is out for six weeks, Jan Kirchhoff isn't expected to be fully fit until the end of the month, Jack Rodwell is ticking time bomb when it comes to injuries and we still haven't signed Yann M'Vila. After those three, we only have Paddy McNair. Pienaar can play in the middle and, with his legs probably not being what they were, a deeper role will probably suit him more comfortably. He won't have lost his touch and range of passing so the hope will be that he can slot in there when needed, while being a good influence on the training ground.
From David Moyes perspective, Pienaar is a player he knows he can trust having brought him to Everton in 2008. When you arrive at a new club, especially a one like ours which never seems to have an easy going week, it's important to have someone around who you can rely on and know exactly what you're getting. I know that's not exactly mouth watering but we shouldn't write this off as a terrible signing just because of lack of progress elsewhere.
In truth, we probably won't see much of Steven Pienaar in a red and white shirt. Admittedly, it does feel like the Louis Saha and James McFadden signings under Martin O'Neill but, you never know, he may fufill a similar role to that of Dwight Yorke did in the Roy Keane era - far from inspiring, but he might do a job.
Don't take it as a "we've clearly got no money" signing because that won't be the case. We still need more players and Moyes will be fully aware of that.
For now, let's get behind the manager and the players ahead of our first home game of the season. You never know, Pienaar might even come off the bench and bag the winner. That would be very Sunderland.
- Interview: Julio Arca Talks To Roker Report Ahead Of SAFC v Boro
- Roker Riches: Week #2 - Defoe First Goal Is The Popular Pick!
- When Sunderland And Middlesbrough Changed The World
- Fan Focus: Fly Me To The Moon Talk SAFC v Middlesbrough
- Kaboul Asks To Leave Sunderland, Watford Bid Accepted: Editorial Comment