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Sunderland manager claims defender can ‘reach new level’ after leaving West Ham

Whatever you want to say about Roy Keane, it would be wrong to describe him as a wallflower. The Irishman is possibly the most talkative manager in the Premier League these days, regularly adding his tuppence worth on the footballing issues of the day. He’s also had plenty to say on the subject of Anton Ferdinand, Sunderland’s latest acquisition.

The Guardian reports that Keano is delighted to have landed Rio’s younger brother and claims that the 23-year-old can make plenty of progress under his leadership at the Stadium of Light. Whether or not it’s intentional, he’s sure to offend a few West Ham supporters with his comments, perhaps the phrase ‘ideas above his station spring to mind’?

“Maybe Anton needed a new environment to get his career on to a new level,” said Keane, who will take Sunderland to his former club Nottingham Forest in the Carling Cup tonight. “He has had a very good club in West Ham, don’t get me wrong, but sometimes when a player comes through the ranks and they have been there since they were a young kid, I think sometimes they get to a bit of a crossroads. They think, which road am I going to go on? Am I going to go to another level or just stay where I am?”

This transfer is a serious statement of intent from Sunderland, who have gone from being Premier League strugglers to a club keen to land a place in the top ten this season. OK, so they still have to get the results to prove their worth, although the fact that they have landed West Ham’s best defender surely reflects their ambitions – what do Hammers fans think about this sale though?

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