With the departures of Jermain Defoe and Victor Anichebe to Bournemouth and Beijing Enterprises respectively, Sunderland were in dire need of a striker this summer.
Bringing in James Vaughan from Bury for just over £500k, the club managed to plug the gap, but with just one goals in 18 appearances, they didn’t get the prolific goalscorer they were looking for to help them regain their Premier League status.
Relying on loanee Lewis Grabban for goals, with eight in 12 appearances, the Black Cats could have done with managing to get one of their targets this summer: Orlando Sá.
The Portuguese striker, currently under contract at Standard Liège in Belgium, was apparently one of the players the Championship side were looking at, as revealed by DH on Friday while they interviewed the forward.
Asking him about his summer, Sá admitted he received many phone calls from clubs interested in his services.
He said: “They asked me for details, but I always answered the same thing: you need to go through the club and I don’t think they want to sell me. Of course, looking at the teams, I knew I could earn a lot more elsewhere, but it isn’t in my nature to force a move.
“I still have a great relationship with the president and Olivier Renard. Seeing how they treat me, I don’t have any reason to act out. I told the board my first option was to stay”.
Despite his desire to stay loyal, the 29-year-old wasn’t sure if Standard would want to keep him, but, in the end, two days before the end of the window, a new contract was offered, keeping him at the club until 2021.
Since then, he’s rewarded them with some good form, scoring six goals in 11 appearances.