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Sunday 23 September 2018

Donald's Cats buy-out

Sunderland's new owner Stewart Donald
Sunderland's new owner Stewart Donald

Ailing Sunderland can approach next season's League One campaign debt free and with a "pretty hefty" transfer budget after Stewart Donald completed his takeover of the club.

Donald said his level of investment in squad improvements for the as-yet-unnamed new manager will dwarf that of the Black Cats' new third-tier rivals, who will include Rochdale, Fleetwood and Accrington.

And the Eastleigh chairman, who will relinquish his position with the National League club as part of the terms of his takeover, said he hoped to have a successor to Chris Coleman announced within the next seven days.

Donald told a press conference: "Looking at the numbers we have put through, the budget for Sunderland is going to be pretty hefty for League One.

"It's going to be a lot more than any of the teams that got promoted last season had got. It's going to be a good budget for Sunderland and I'm sure it's a budget one or two Championship clubs would like."

Donald revealed he paid former owner Ellis Short £40million as part of a deal which also included Short paying off the club's nine-figure debt, effectively leaving them debt free for the start of the new campaign.

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