Despite earlier suggesting he would be looking for an option to stay in the Premier League next season, Bryan Oviedo has insisted he plans to stay with Sunderland in the Championship.
Speaking ahead of Costa Rica's CONCACAF Gold Cup campaign which begins a week on Saturday, the 27-year-old says he's happy to remain at the Stadium of Light in the second-tier, though he isn't absolutely convincing:
At the moment I am a Sunderland player. I am happy and calm; we will see later. I'm thinking of returning to the club after the Gold Cup.
Oviedo had previously hinted he will be on the move this summer, telling the media in his homeland in late May that his preference would be to play in the Premier League:
I have a contract with Sunderland, it is a great team with a great infrastructure, the only problem was the relegation and if I have to continue well, the Championship is a great league, but I will always look for the option to remain in the Premier.
Those words caused some derision coming as they did just a fortnight after Sunderland had ended the season dumped out of the Premier League but the player signed from Everton now appears to suggest he will be playing in red-and-white next season for the manager-less Black Cats.
Oviedo was signed by David Moyes in January having previously worked with the now-former Sunderland boss at Everton.
The Costa Rican international opted to switch Goodison Park for the Stadium of Light in a combined fee worth £7.5m alongside fellow Toffee Darron Gibson.
The 27-year-old featured 16 times in a Sunderland shirt as the winter hopes of survival gave way to a spring limp to relegation. Oviedo made 10 starts, missing the confirmation of the drop with a 4-game absence during April with a hamstring injury.
In Oviedo's case, finding himself in the Championship with Sunderland can be little surprise. When he signed from Everton, the Black Cats were rooted to the bottom of the league and already looking forlornly at the second tier.
For that reason, many had expected that the defender will be preparing himself for the new campaign in the old second division and whilst he may be keeping an eye on his options, his semi-commitment to a future at Sunderland is good news.
Oviedo signed for Everton in 2012 from FC Copenhagen and went onto make 50 appearances for the Toffees.
After finding his opportunities near-constantly limited by the ever-present Leighton Baines, the left back declared his desire to leave Goodison late last year.
At the time he signed for Sunderland there were reports of various unnamed suitors for his services. He has previously been linked with the likes of QPR and Newcastle.
Frankly, Bryan Oviedo will be one of the best left-backs in the Championship next season and will be an asset to Sunderland. He's presently in Costa Rica preparing for that Gold Cup which begins in ten days time.
The showcase of North American, Central American and Caribbean football concludes in 26th July so Sunderland will be without their first choice senior left-back for most or all of July's pre-season fixtures.
Oviedo was a guest at Arsenal winger Joel Campbell's wedding last weekend. Most will recall the Costa Rican winger tearing us apart in January 2016 during one of his rare outings for the Gunners in the FA Cup Third Round when Sam Allardyce was manager at the Stadium of Light.
Canobell was on loan at Sporting Lisbon last season with ex Sunderland defender Sebastian Coates and it looks like his time at Arsenal has come to an end. Put a word in Bryan.