THE double capture of Stephane Sessegnon and Sulley Muntari brings to an end a testing month-long pursuit for Sunderland boss Steve Bruce.
Muntari and Sessegnon signed within hours of each other on Saturday afternoon to hand Bruce a major boost heading into tonight’s transfer deadline.
Since the loss to injury of Danny Welbeck, David Meyler and Lee Cattermole at the turn of the year, Bruce has been keen to boost Sunderland’s ranks for the second half of the campaign with a couple of loan acquisitions.
With Sunderland already boasting the maximum two domestic loan players, Bruce was forced to turn to the foreign market and had to be patient in his hunt for the two midfielders.
Sessegnon looked around Sunderland’s facilities three weeks ago and after a fall-out with Paris St Germain coach Antoine Kombouare, he looked set for a swift move to the Stadium of Light.
The 26-year-old refused to play or train under Kombouare’s reign despite earning himself severe fines from the club.
But PSG were unwilling to let the Benin international leave the club on loan and Sessegnon returned to training in a bid to find a way forward.
Bruce decided the former Le Mans player was worth investing in on a permanent deal and had hoped to have him in place by the time Sunderland headed to Blackpool nine days ago.
But it took time for the two clubs to agree a £6m deal with Sessegnon finally holding talks in the North East last week.
Sessegnon, who is in line to make his debut against Chelsea tomorrow, said: “I am very happy and glad to be here. The transfer has been long and the execution has been tough.
“I can’t wait to start in the Premier League. It has been my dream for years.
“The Premier League is the best league to play in, I have always wanted to play here.
“Sunderland was the place I wanted to be even though there were other teams interested.”
Bruce added: “I’m delighted to bring Stéphane here. He’s a player that I’m sure will really appeal to Sunderland fans.
“He has proven he is a huge talent during his time in France.
“He is lightning quick and his ability to slot in right across the attacking positions – whether he operates in behind or alongside a striker or on either flank, makes him a great addition to what is a young and hungry squad.”
Sessegnon’s decision to quit the Parc des Princes has not gone down well with ex-coach Kombouare though.