Sporting CP confirm fee they paid Sunderland for Sebastian Coates
Sporting CP have confirmed the amount they paid Sunderland to sign Sebastian Coates on a permanent basis a little over a week ago. The Uruguayan defender had been on loan in Portugal for twelve months when the Lisbon outfit triggered the right-to-buy clause in the deal between the two clubs on the 2nd February.
In its return to the Portuguese market regulator on such matters, Sporting declared that they paid 4.72 million euros to Sunderland for the 26-year-old defender. That's just over 4 million pounds. Pretty much as expected, but still a profit of a couple of million quid compared with the fee Dick Advocaat paid for Coates in 2015.
The transfer of Coates caused something of a stir in Portugal. At one point Sporting's fierce city rivals Benfica were rumoured to be poised to hijack the deal - causing widespread consternation amongst the city of Lisbon's green and white supporters. Once the deal was confirmed as landing in the former's favour however, the latter denied they had ever expressed any interest in him after all.
Whilst the fee paid to Sunderland is not hugely significant, the transfer of Sebastian Coates does continue a positive trend started by the sale of Patrick van Aanholt. Both players turned a profit on their original fee paid.
Remember that dreaded statistic, how at one point Sunderland had only made a profit on three of the last forty-six players sold? Now, the sale of Coates added to that of van Aanholt makes it five players in forty-eight. That's progress, right?
The last time David Moyes took a team to New York...
David Moyes will take his squad to the Big Apple during the upcoming fortnight break from Premier League football. The trip has raised a few eyebrows - mainly due to the sub-zero temperatures New York is currently experiencing - and is in stark contrast to last season when Sam Allardyce took his Sunderland squad to Dubai for some warm weather training.
The Sunderland boss spoke about the trip yesterday saying:
I've done New York before and it works.
We'll train every day and do quite a bit of running in Central Park as well as cycling, but the players will have downtime for sightseeing and other things.
Moyes certainly has done it before - on several occasions. During his spell as Everton boss, the Scot took his squad to America a couple of times, most recently in March 2011. Back then Victor Anichebe and Jack Rodwell were part of the Goodison contingent who spent a week in New York.
And it worked a treat. Everton finished seventh in the Premier League and lost just two of their final nine games of the season on their return. But what is also worth noting are certain parallels between Sunderland of 2016/17 and that Everton side of 2010/11.
Back then, the Goodison outfit were struggling to compete financially with many of the other teams in the top half of the Premier League. Fans on Merseyside were plotting protests against owner Bill Kenwright, such was their dissatisfaction with how the impresario was running their club.
Kenwright had often claimed Everton were up for sale, but for whatever reason he never quite committed to letting the club go to an interested party with a sizeable enough bid.
And in the January transfer window that season, Moyes had zero funds to work with and had concentrated on keeping what he had rather than being able to bring in new faces. Everton had thwarted attempts to lure a young Jack Rodwell to pastures new and the then-Goodison boss was unable to bring in any new first team players.
Sounds familiar? Well, yes it does. Sunderland have reached a point where investment in new players was almost impossible in the January transfer window just gone, whilst owner Ellis Short appears to be willing to listen offers for his club, even if he has so far stopped short of openly declaring Sunderland are actively up for sale.
There are reasons for optimism this weekend - dependent on today's result of course - but this remains a football business with very deep problems. As David Moyes proved when he jetted off to New York in 2011, he really does appear to be a man capable of leading a club in this sort of state. Let's hope we have reasons to continue believing so at 4.45pm this afternoon.