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Roker Roundup: Josh Maja linked to Rangers - set for reunion with ex-Sunderland teammate Defoe?

Former Sunderland striker Josh Maja is reportedly a target for Scottish side Rangers - is the Nigeria international set for a reunion with his former teammate Jermain Defoe?

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Defoe reunion for Maja?

Academy product Josh Maja may be reunited with his mentor at Sunderland, Jermain Defoe, according to reports.

Get French Football News claim Rangers will open talks with Ligue 1 outfit Bordeaux next week over a move for the Nigerian international.

Rangers appear set to lose main striker Alfredo Morelos to Lille, with reports suggesting that talks are underway and some reports claiming the player has already agreed terms with the French side.

With Steven Gerrard claiming that he does not have enough options up front and is looking for a striker who can help his team over the long term, Maja would fit that bill.

Any move for Maja would also provide a financial boost to Sunderland, thanks to the 10% sell-on fee the club had inserted into the player’s contract with Bordeaux.

Charlton Athletic v Sunderland - Sky Bet League One Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Niall Quinn discusses his Sunderland takeover

With the lack of Irish footballers at the top of the English game, the42.ie spoke to Niall Quinn about whether Drumaville’s Irish takeover of Sunderland could ever be repeated.

Drumaville had originally planned to buy Shamrock Rovers six months earlier but that deal had fallen through. Quinn later attended a meeting with Bob Murray about saving the Foundation of Light at a London hotel, when Murray asked after dinner whether Quinn would be interested in buying Sunderland:

A lot of that stuff happened by accident, it’s kind of a long story.

Still, the guys [Drumaville] had an itch there that needed to be scratched. I’d a feeling Sunderland might interest them.

After buying the club and refinancing the £35m debt with Allied Irish Bank UK, Quinn had to take up his second piece of business. Convincing Roy Keane to be the new mananger:

I hadn’t spoken to Roy Keane since Saipan. I wanted to get the deal done as soon as possible.

Okay, it was our first meeting but it went really well. I knew what Roy was capable of; knew he’d be just the person to lift the dressing room. And we all know now that he did way more than that. He inspired a city not just a football club.

Asked whether the same set of circumstances could happen again, with Irish investment into English football leading to more Irish players in the Premier League, Quinn believes that is a long shot due to the current finances involved in the top flight:

It’s a bit of a long shot because it’s just not that simple to buy a club, to find one even at Championship level that is for sale and has the potential to go up. Look what we spent in 2006 (a net total of £5 million on transfers in the August transfer window). Most of our signings came on frees.

Like, I remember the summer after we won promotion and Roy wanted to get Craig Gordon. We convened especially in Dublin to talk about that deal; Roy speaking persuasively and powerfully about how a strong goalkeeper was the cornerstone of any team, particularly his successful Manchester United sides. It was a lot of money for us but in the end we went for it.

Gordon cost £9 million.

That’s precisely my point. Contrast that figure with the numbers Wolves have spent in the last three years (£117m). It is a different scenario now, a whole different story to 2006 when we went in. It takes serious investment to get a team out of the Championship now and then keep them in the Premier League. Have I any interest in doing something like that again? Look, it took a serious toll the first time. There were too many times when I was getting home (to his Kildare base) just once a fortnight. Looking back, it was far from ideal.

You can read the full article on how Niall Quinn ended up being Sunderland chairman by reading the full article HERE.

Soccer - Stadium of Light - Sunderland press conference Photo by Tom Buist - PA Images via Getty Images

New deal for Mika

Former Sunderland goalkeeper Mika has signed a new deal with Portuguese outfit Academica that will keep him at the club until the end of the 2020/21 season.

The Liga Pro club announced the deal on the club’s official website with the 29-year-old that he was very happy to remain with the club:

I am very happy to remain in a historic and emblematic club like Académica.

Mika spent two years at Sunderland after signing in 2016, mostly as third choice, before leaving the club by mutual consent in 2018 without making a single first team appearance.

Sunderland Unveil New Loan Signing Michael Simoes Domingues Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images