Bramble seals switch to Black Cats

23 July 2010 10:17
Titus Bramble has completed his expected move from Wigan to Sunderland for a fee believed to be in the region of £1million.

The 28-year-old central defender has signed a three-year deal and could make his debut for the Black Cats in tomorrow evening's friendly clash with Hull in Portugal.

Bramble headed out to the Algarve earlier this week after the two clubs settled on a fee and has passed a medical and agreed personal terms, although the final administrative details were only completed today.

Steve Bruce is delighted to have captured a player he first tried to sign 12 months ago after a hugely successful spell together at Wigan.

Bruce said: "Titus was absolutely outstanding for me at Wigan.

"He matured into a very, very good player so there was absolutely no hesitation when the chance came to bring him to Sunderland.

"He was certainly the right player at the right price and this is a great deal for the football club."

Bramble began his career at hometown club Ipswich, where he broke into the first team as a teenager before winning a £5million move to Newcastle during the summer of 2002.

However, his time at St James' Park was blighted by a series of high-profile blunders and despite the backing he received from Sir Bobby Robson, the man who had signed him, and his successor, Graeme Souness, he was never able to win over his doubters.

He moved to Wigan in 2007 when his Magpies deal was allowed to expire, and has since re-invented himself, particularly during his time working under Bruce at the then JJB Stadium.

Bramble's arrival on Wearside may not meet with universal approval, but at his best, he is a powerful defender whose ability has rarely been in question, although the same has not always been said of his concentration levels.

He becomes Sunderland's fourth close-season acquisition after Cristian Riveros, Simon Mignolet and loan signing Ahmed Al-Muhammadi, and he is unlikely to be the last with Bruce still keen to add to his defensive cover.

The Black Cats are hoping to push through their move for Argentinian full-back Marcos Angeleri next week once he has received his Italian passport, while another loan deal for Ghana international John Mensah remains a possibility.

One man unlikely to be at the Stadium of Light next season is Hungary goalkeeper Marton Fulop despite Craig Gordon's recent injury setback.

Bruce is currently pondering his options - a deal for David James is believed to be under consideration - with Gordon destined to miss the opening months of the new campaign with his second arm fracture in eight months.

But Fulop will be allowed to leave with former Black Cats boss Roy Keane among those to have expressed an interest.

Bruce told the Journal: "There has been an enquiry from Ipswich, but I don't think there has been a bid yet. There has been talk with a number of other clubs as well.

"I'm sure he will go. He wants to play football and I'm not going to stand in his way.

"With the injury to Craig, it has got me thinking a bit [about the goalkeeping situation], but Marton wants to play regularly so something will happen there.

"I don't know whether it will be Ipswich, we will have to wait and see."

Source: Team_Talk