Max Power has took time to reflect on his surprising move from Wigan Athletic to Sunderland last season.
The midfielder was a key player for Paul Cook’s side, especially in 2017/18 when the Latics won automatic promotion to the Sky Bet Championship.
The 26-year-old scored five goals and chipped in with nine assists from midfield that season, but despite his side’s achievements, he was on the way out of the DW Stadium the following summer.
Sunderland swooped to sign Power as Jack Ross’ side look to return to the Championship at the first time of asking, following their relegation to League One.
Power has since become a really important player for Sunderland, making 84 appearances for the Black Cats to date, but was unable to help them get over the line last term.
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He said: “I remember getting called in to Paul Cook’s office. Deadline day was on the Thursday, and this was on the Tuesday.
“There had been murmurings of clubs being interested and that I might be moving on, but he pulled me in and said I would be starting on the Saturday.
“We had Aston Villa away and I was going to play tucked in off the right, so my focus was just on the weekend.
“Then I got a phone call on the Thursday saying they had got a bid from Sunderland and I was free to leave.
“It was the first time in my career that I had been told by a manager that I was no longer wanted.
“I ended up joining a big club, and looking back I don’t think I would have left Wigan for any other club.
“I remember ringing a lot of people on the way up to Sunderland asking ‘should I do it? Should I not?’ and every single person came back with the same answer.
“It’s all good and well playing in the Championship, but how often does an opportunity come along to play for Sunderland? That made my mind up for me.”
Sunderland look set to miss out on another return to the second tier with League One and League Two set to be abandoned, with the club currently sitting just outside of the play-offs on goal difference.
Having been such a key player for Wigan in their promotion-winning campaign, I think it came as a bit of a surprise to everyone to see Power leave Wigan.
Sunderland pulled off a real coup to bring him to the Stadium of Light, and despite a poor disciplinary record, he has proved to be a solid addition thus far.
He’s a fiery character and loves a battle and that’s what you need in League One sometimes.