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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Jul 27, 2008

Sunderland wrap up deal for Chimbonda

Sunderland manager Roy Keane has strengthened his defensive options after the Black Cats completed the signing of Tottenham defender Pascal Chimbonda.

The 29-year-old versatile full-back has agreed a three-year contract at the Stadium of Light after the two clubs agreed an undisclosed fee for the player.

Chimbonda, who moved to White Hart Lane from Wigan for £4.5million in August 2006, becomes the second Spurs player to move to Wearside following Teemu Tainio's switch three days ago.

Guadeloupe-born Chimbonda becomes Keane's third major signing of the summer after the arrivals of teenager David Meyler from Cork City and Finland midfielder Tainio.

Keane believes Chimbonda, who was a non-playing member of France's 2006 World Cup squad, will be a useful addition to the squad.

'He'll give us more options at the back, creating more competition for places there, so all-in-all it is a fantastic signing for us.' he told www.safc.com.

'Pascal is one of those rare players who can play anywhere across the back line and that will be invaluable to us, so naturally we are very pleased to secure his services.

'He has a lot of Premier League experience which can only be a plus for us.'

Chimbonda began his career with French outfit Le Havre and then had a two-year spell at Bastia before he was signed by Wigan boss Paul Jewell for £500,000 in July 2005.

After an impressive debut season with the Latics he was linked with a number of Premier League clubs and handed in a transfer request at the end of the 2005-06 season.

He began the 2006-07 season as a Wigan player but after declaring his interest in leaving the JJB Stadium he was sold to Spurs on transfer deadline day.

Chimbonda, who has been capped once by France against Denmark in May 2006, went on to make 97 appearances for the club before his move to the Stadium of Light.

The deal for Chimbonda is the second part of Keane's quadruple swoop on Juande Ramos' squad which is set to cost the club a total of around £16million in transfer fees.

Keane is now awaiting an answer from defender Younes Kaboul who is also attracting interest from Aston Villa and Portsmouth.

The Morocco-born Frenchman had indicated his intention to head for Wearside to discuss personal terms before Villa and Pompey registered their interest.

Former Auxerre man Kaboul will weigh up a move to the north-east and Keane will hope the arrival of Chimbonda will help facilitate a deal, though Pompey boss Harry Redknapp remains confident Kaboul will head south.

'Sunderland and Villa both made fantastic offers, but the lad decided he wanted to come to Portsmouth,' Redknapp told the Daily Star. 'Hopefully the deal will be completed over the weekend. Younes is a good, young player with bags of potential. He will be a great addition to the squad.'

Also part of the quartet of Spurs players is midfielder Steed Malbranque, although there has been no further development over a move.

Meanwhile, the Black Cats continued their pre-season programme with a 1-0 victory over Hartlepool in the Hartlepool Centenary Cup.

Michael Chopra scored a second-half penalty to seal the win for a youthful Sunderland side who will now face Hamilton at Victoria Park in the final tomorrow.

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