Sunderland boss Steve Bruce has made his first transfer window signing after landing defender Matthew Kilgallon from Sheffield United.
The 26-year-old centre-half was wanted by north-east rivals Newcastle United and also Everton, but has opted to join the Black Cats for an undisclosed fee on a three-and-a-half-year contract.
Kilgallon was voted the Blades' player of the year last season and recently made his 100th appearance for the South Yorkshire club.
"Matthew is a very talented defender and has been coveted by a number of top-flight clubs recently, so I'm very pleased to have brought him here," manager Steve Bruce told the club's official website.
"He will add to our options across the back ahead of some very important games.
"I'm sure he will prove to be a great signing for the club."
His arrival at the Stadium of Light is unlikely to be the last piece of business conducted by the Wearside club this month.
Bruce is believed to be interested in Hamburg's Ivory Coast defender Guy Demel and also Wigan Athletic full-back Maynor Figueroa.