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Sebastian Coates leaves in a deal rumoured to be worth €5m, What wages does he free up?

After much deliberation, Sporting Lisbon have finally made Sebastian Coates a permanent signing. Reports in Portugal are suggesting the deal is worth €5m, so what impact does that have on Sunderland's wage bill and on David Moyes' ability to sign a free agent player?

Sunderland v West Ham United - Premier League Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty images

Sunderland's semi-forgotten man, Sebastian Coates, has now permanently departed the Stadium of Light in a deal thought to be worth around €5m.

The 26-year-old defender had been on loan at Sporting Lisbon for twelve months with the arrangement extended last summer to include the current campaign.

Real Madrid CF v Sporting Clube de Portugal - UEFA Champions League
Coates challenging Gareth Bale on a Champions League match, September 2-16
Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images

With Sunderland keen to offload those players surplus to requirements to raise some cash and the Lisbon-based outfit under increasing pressure to make the deal a permanent one, the sale makes sense to both parties. Sporting were thought to face competition from a number of European sides for his signature and have now acted to end speculation.

Coates joined Sunderland in 2014 from Liverpool in a season-long loan deal linking up with fellow Uruguayan, then-manager Gus Poyet.

Sunderland v Hull City - Premier League
Coates playing for Sunderland against Hull, December 2014
Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

After initially falling out of favour at the Stadium of Light, his displays after Poyet had been sacked - particularly during the survival run-in masterminded by Dick Advocaat - earned him a permanent move to Sunderland in the summer of 2015.

But, in truth, Coates and English football never seemed to quite match. He had failed to break into the first team on a permanent basis at Anfield and followed that up with some increasingly poor displays at the Stadium of Light.

Sunderland v Watford - Premier League
Coates in December 2015 at the Stadium of Light vs Watford
Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

On 28th January last year, the centre-half joined Sporting on loan and has made a success of his time in Portugal. Coates has appeared in eighteen league games this season, scoring three goals and has been a regular in the Champions League.

The stumbling block as to why the deal wasn't made permanent sooner is thought to have been the player holding out for more cash. Coates has repeatedly reaffirmed his desire to stay at Sporting but negotiations have been ongoing over add-ons and loyalty bonuses owed to him.

It has always been unlikely that the Portuguese side would match the wages paid to him by Sunderland, so Coates' representatives have been seeking to maximise the extras they could get into the deal.

Reports in Portugal a little while ago suggested Coates earns €200,000 a month at Sporting, with Sunderland only paying €30,000 towards that figure, so the impact on the wage bill at the Stadium of Light may not be enormous.

But this sale could yet indicate that David Moyes may be able to move to sign a free-agent following his frustrations in not being able to land all of the bodies he required before the transfer window shut on Tuesday night.

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