Martin O'Neill

MON's deadline deal delight

Published:
by Stuart Vose

Boss aiming to lighten load on Fletcher.

Martin O’Neill has spoken of his delight at securing the signature of Danny Graham.

The Sunderland boss made a deadline-day swoop to snare the striker, with the Black Cats paying Swansea a £5m fee to acquire his services.

Graham finished as City top scorer with 14 goals last season and added a further seven under Michael Laudrup during the current campaign.

I think Danny can fit in and score a few goals for us

- Martin O'Neill

“Danny will work hard for the team and did very well at Swansea, where he had a good season last year," O'Neill told safc.com.

“We’re delighted to have Danny and I genuinely think he’ll do well for us. He has a real desire to do well.

“I saw him from afar last season when he played very well in a system which seemed to suit him.”

O’Neill targeted a striker as a priority and says his new signing has a vital role to play in taking the scoring load off 10-goal leading marksman Steven Fletcher.

“I think Danny can fit in and score a few goals for us,” he said.

“We want to be less reliant on Steven Fletcher scoring the goals. I think Danny will alleviate the load; that’s my expectation and I think he feels the same.”

And O’Neill has dropped a hint that Fletcher and Graham may combine, although the Sunderland chief was keeping his cards close to his chest.

 “I’ve got a fairly decent idea in my head about how we’ll use Danny,” he revealed.

“As the players get to know him and he gets to know them, there’ll be a number of formations we’ll be able to use.”