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ROKER ROUNDUP: Former Sunderland player gives strong hint he’ll join Jack Ross’ coaching staff

Tony Coton hints at Sunderland move, former pair sign new contracts, goalkeeper linked and duo on international duty.

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Coton hints at Sunderland move

Ex-Sunderland goalkeeper Tony Coton has been strongly rumoured to be joining the backroom staff at the Stadium of Light - marking a return to the club that he left as a player all the way back in 1997.

Coton is currently the Chief Domestic Scout at financially-crippled Championship side Aston Villa, but it’s thought that he will be joining Sunderland to assist Jack Ross in a senior scouting role.

Coton had a spell on Wearside under Peter Reid during the 1996-97 season, but unfortunately suffered an horrific leg break after only a handful of appearances that put an end to his playing career.

Coton hinted that he may be returning when he replied to a user on Twitter who asked him if he was headed to Sunderland, saying:

To which @gillham_kevin replied welcoming Coton back to the club, a Tweet that Coton subsequently liked.

Coton has also been a goalkeeping coach at Manchester United but due to a knee injury had to retire, so if he were to return to Sunderland it’s more than likely that it won’t be to fill the currently vacant goalkeeping coach role.

Tony Coton of Sunderland in action

Transfer news

Ben Alnwick had been linked with Sunderland since January - and the goalkeeper’s contract was due to expire at the end of the month - but Bolton Wanderers announced yesterday that the 31-year-old had signed a new two-year deal.

Former Sunderland midfielder David Meyler has also signed a new contract, but this time at Reading after his deal expired at fellow Championship side Hull City.

Meyler, who played 31 times for Sunderland between 2008 and 2013, is expected to be joined at the Madjeski Stadium by John O’Shea.

Sunderland have been linked with a move for non-league goalkeeper Tom McHale.

22-year-old McHale is currently on the books of Truro City of National League South and recently made his England C debut. He has also been linked with a move to Ross’ former club St Mirren and fellow Scottish Premiership side St Johnstone.

Sunderland v Aston Villa Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

International action for U23 pair

Sunderland development squad pair Sam Brotherton and Michael Woud were in the New Zealand squad that beat Chinese Taipei in the HERO International Cup in Mumbai.

Brotherton replaced All Whites skipper Thomas Doyle with 14 minutes to go, whilst Woud was an unused substitute.

New Zealand won 1-0 thanks to a first half penalty converted by Myer Bevan and now must beat hosts India on Sunday to progress to the tournament final.