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By ESPN Staff

Sunderland's Stokes seals Blades loan move

Sunderland striker Anthony Stokes has joined Coca-Cola Championship side Sheffield United on a three-month loan.

Stokes has struggled to break into the Sunderland first team this season after manager Roy Keane brought in forwards Djibril Cisse, El Hadji Diouf and David Healy over the summer.

Sunderland's £6million striker Kenwyne Jones is also close to a return to action after over four months out through injury.

Stokes has made only three substitute appearances for the Black Cats this term but scored twice in the club's League Cup win over Northampton last month.

The Republic of Ireland international goes straight into United's squad to face Sheffield Wednesday in the derby on Sunday.

The 20-year-old will join up with fellow Black Cat Greg Halford, who is also on loan at the Blades.

United boss Kevin Blackwell said: ''He will give us more options on the left-hand side, especially as we have got a few injury niggles.

''He has also played in the hole and gives us great cover right across the front line.''

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