Black Cats agree to sell Cana to Gala

08 July 2010 04:39
Sunderland skipper Lorik Cana has made a surprise move to Galatasaray after finding the lure of Champions League football too hard to resist.[LNB] The 26-year-old Albania international has completed a move to the Turkish club following the Black Cats' decision to accept a bid of in excess of 6million euros for his services.[LNB]Despite establishing himself as a crowd favourite at the Stadium of Light, Cana has moved on after just one season.[LNB]He said: "Since the first day I arrived, I have had an amazing story with Sunderland.[LNB]"I knew I would find the kind of club and support I needed to play my game.[LNB]"The people here love their club, they have passion and a proper identity. I gave my all for the club and it will always be in my memory.[LNB]"I have been offered the opportunity to play in European competition and the Champions League, and especially to be closer to my family.[LNB]"This was not an easy decision for me though and I hope people understand.[LNB]"I thank everyone at Sunderland - the coaching staff, medical team, office staff, my team-mates and of course the fans.[LNB]"I wish the club to achieve everything it deserves and to continue moving higher and higher."[LNB]Cana joined the Wearsiders in a £5million switch from Marseille last summer and was an instant hit as his robust style of play endeared him to the club's fans.[LNB]He made 35 appearances last season, two of them as a substitute, although he was sent off once and picked up 10 bookings along the way, which was a concern for Sunderland manager Steve Bruce.[LNB]Bruce said: "Lorik's style of play and attitude made him a natural choice as captain last season, but when he came back for pre-season training, it was apparent that he had a desire to return to Europe.[LNB]"Turkey is nearer to Albania, where his family and roots are, and it is much easier for him to see them on a more regular basis - I think this was a major factor for him.[LNB]"We thank Lorik for his time here and wish him the best of luck for the future."[LNB]Despite Cana's departure, Bruce will still have Lee Cattermole as a holding midfield player, while youngster Jordan Henderson shone last season and fellow Academy graduate Jack Colback has been challenged to make a similar step up after his successful spell on loan at Ipswich.[LNB]In addition, the Black Cats have already added Paraguay midfielder Cristian Riveros to their squad, although the South American is currently enjoying a break after his exertions at the World Cup finals.[LNB]The versatile Riveros lined up in the playmaker role for his country in South Africa, but can also operate in a wide position.[LNB]Sunderland returned for pre-season training on Wednesday as Bruce continued his search for new recruits.[LNB]Indeed, they were joined at the Academy of Light training headquarters this morning by Argentinian full-back Marcos Angeleri.[LNB]However, no deal for the Estudiantes defender, who has three senior international caps, has been agreed yet.[LNB]Meanwhile, the Black Cats have been linked with a move for Ghana international striker Asamoah Gyan following his fine World Cup.[LNB]But it is understood Sunderland contacted Rennes before the tournament got underway and are yet to return with a firm proposal.

Source: Team_Talk