Sunderland have signed 18-year-old striker Connor Wickham from Ipswich on a four-year deal for an initial fee of eight million pounds.
Wickham had been a target for a host of English Premier League clubs, including Liverpool and Arsenal, but Sunderland have won the race for the England under-21 international.
The eight million-pound fee has the potential to rise to 12 million over the course of Wickham’s contract.
“Steve Bruce has made England Under 21 international Connor Wickham his latest summer signing,” a statement on the official Sunderland website read.
Sunderland’s coffers had been swelled by the sale of Darren Bent to Aston Villa and Jordan Henderson to Liverpool, and manager Bruce said he was delighted to use some of those funds to secure Wickham.
“A number of top sides have been chasing Connor for some time now, so naturally we are absolutely delighted he has chosen to come to Sunderland,” Bruce said.
“He’s still very young, but at 6ft 3in he’s a physical presence. With his height and style of play, he will offer us a threat in front of goal and complement our existing strikers.”
“We have been watching him for a while now and he is improving and developing all the time. He’s a great prospect and I’m sure our supporters will love watching him play.”