New contract: Dan Ballard extends deal with SAFC

Sunderland AFC is delighted to announce that Dan Ballard has signed a new long-term contract at the Stadium of Light.

The 23-year-old defender has agreed a new four-year deal on Wearside, extending his stay until 30 June 2027.

An Arsenal academy product, Ballard spent the 2021-22 season on loan at Millwall and made 31 Sky Bet Championship appearances prior to joining SAFC last summer.

The Northern Ireland international made 22 appearances for the Lads in his maiden north-east campaign, picking up where he left off in the second tier by establishing himself as a dominant presence in defence.

After missing the Club’s Play-Off campaign in May, Ballard returned to action in pre-season and the defender is expected to feature on Sunday when Ipswich Town travel to the Stadium of Light.

Ballard commented: “I’m extremely happy to have signed a new deal at Sunderland. Over the past year, I’ve really grown to love the Club – the support and the love that I’ve got, the people I’ve met, the city, it’s all been amazing – and I feel that Im in the best spot in my career. In this team, Im taking up a new role in being one of the leaders and Im excited to do that. I’m looking forward to the new campaign and can’t wait for Sunday.”

Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman added: “Dan has proved that he’s a standout performer at this level and he’s growing in stature every day, on and off the pitch. He has a bright future ahead of him and he’s extremely ambitious, and his decision to renew terms with us demonstrates that he feels his ambition is matched by that of the Club. Dan follows Dennis Cirkin and Trai Hume in committing his future to SAFC this summer, and it is a huge boost for us to be securing the futures of such high-calibre players. We look forward to continuing to support his development and believe he has a big season ahead of him.”

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