Lee Cattermole has left Wigan Athletic to join Sunderland and once again team up with Steve Bruce for a fee totalling £8 million.
With just three days remaining before the start of the new season and following weeks of speculation Wigan Athletic have allowed England U21 midfielder Lee Cattermole to join Steve Bruce at Sunderland thus ending a long drawn out chase by the former Wigan manager.
Sunderland had already had an offer rejected by Wigan for the former Middlesbrough star who cost Latics £3.5 million a little over 12 months ago but the North East club have come in with an improved bid which, according to new Wigan manager Roberto Martinez, met their valuation for the player.
Speaking to the official website Martinez said: “The fee is a good one. It is far more than the club paid for him last year and the third highest in Wigan Athletic history. The initial offer from Sunderland was unacceptable as we said at the time, but they have now matched our valuation.
“The speculation about Lee has refused to go away over the last few weeks and this has been very unsettling for him and for our players. It became clear over the past days having spoken to Lee that he wanted to leave and it is very disruptive to the group when a player is clearly unhappy.
“My number one priority has to be the good of the club and it left me with a decision to make, I therefore agreed to the move for the good of the players we have at the club and who want to remain with us and help us progress to the next level.”
Cattermole made a total 35 league and cup appearances for Wigan last season and found the back of the net twice during that time and was very much regarded as ‘one for the future’ with many Wigan fans now unhappy about the youngster’s departure.