Date:Monday January 8 2007
Keane's bid for an ancient Shakespeare manuscript fails. Actually that's lie, he's just missed out on a Man Utd right back.
Apologies for that dire intro, but since we're not signing him I thought I'd use up my Bard/Shakespeare punnery.
Anyway, the delight at Keane's soon-to-be confirmed transfer coup, the acquisition of Anthony Stokes under the noses of Celtic and Charlton, after much deliberation over whether to be or not to be a Sunderland player, will be tempered slightly by the news that Manchester United youngster Phil Bardsley will not be joining the club.
Instead, he will opt to join Martin O'Neil's slow moving revolution at Villa Park.
Bardlsey spent the beginning of the season on loan at Rangers before falling out with popular Frenchman Paul le Guen, and returned to Manchester's Theatre of Dreams where all the world is a stage.
With Stephen Wright a long term absentee and other recognised right back Nyron Nosworthy a frequent visitor to the treatment table, Keane has been forced to play Dean Whitehead as a stand in full back.
And despite the midfield man's admirable performances in this position, Keane was hoping to bring in Bardsley to allow Whitehead to again challenge for a midfield place.
But, unlike the eager, enthusiastic and quite frankly very wise Jonny Evans, who couldn't wait to join us, Bardsley has opted for Premiership football at one of the country's top sides. Sorry, I mean Aston Villa. He'll be hoping his decision does not make him fortunes fool...
With Carlos Edwards, Jonny Evans and Marton Fulop arriving in the transfer window, and Stokes set to be confirmed, it would seem that a full back, and maybe one for both sides, appears to be Keane's new priority. He has been linked with Plymouth's left back, Tony Capaldi. With all these signings, it certainly doesn't look like being a winter of discontent for Sunderland fans.
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