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Sunderland to review future of 'outstanding' defender in the summer

By Michael Graham,


Centre-back future still up in the air, although Kristjaan Speakman can't speak highly enough of him.

Sunderland will evaluate the future of Bailey Wright in the summer following his loan spell at Rotherham, says Kristjaan Speakman.

Wright was a deadline day departure to Championship strugglers Rotherham, as revealed exclusively by Sunderland Nation.

It saw the Millers ultimately win the race for the Australian, beating off interest from Aberdeen, Hibs, Derby and Portsmouth.

Wright will have a year left to run on his Sunderland contract when he returns to the club this summer, and Speakman is open to all possibilities given the defender's character.

"His impact on and off the pitch in the time I have been here has been nothing short of outstandingly positive," Speakman said .

"These are really difficult scenarios because your inner-selfishness says keep him around the group because he can have such a positive impact - and I do appreciate we have a very young group, and we are taking out some of that experience.

"But at the same time we have to be fair to Bails and he wants to play more regularly. If we are fully-fit then he probably doesn't play as much as he wants to.

"We had this discussion all the way through January as to what the best options would be and there was a good chance he was going to stay, but the Rotherham opportunity gives him a chance to play at the same level and keeps him relevant, if you like, in terms of the level we are playing at. We're really hopeful he can go there and do well.

"It's an easy one for us when their coach [Rotherham boss Matt Taylor] phones us and wants to have a conversation about what type of person he is - he probably thought I was over-egging it a bit, but that's Bails!

“He is the consummate professional on and off the pitch and I'm really proud he is a Sunderland player. He will come back in the summer and we'll have to review where he is at."

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