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Saturday 19 May 2012

Sunderland release Gordon and eight others

Black Cats let Scottish goalkeeper leave after five years at Stadium of Light

Craig Gordon only made one appearance in the Barclays Premier League last season

Sunderland have released goalkeeper Craig Gordon along with eight other players at the end of the 2011/12 season.

The Scottish stopper signed for the Black Cats in August 2007 from SPL side Hearts for a fee of about £9m, then a British record fee for a goalkeeper.

He went on to make 95 appearances for the Stadium of Light club, but suffered with injury problems in recent seasons and the 29-year-old only made one Barclays Premier League appearance last season, in the 2-2 draw at home to Bolton Wanderers in April.

Gordon did pick up a trophy recently, however, when he won a public vote to find the Best Save in the history of the Premier League in the competition's 20 Seasons Awards.

Gordon's stunning reaction stop to deny Zat Knight in December 2010 won 18% of the vote to finish ahead of Manchester United legend Peter Schmeichel and Bolton's Jussi Jaaskelainen.

Joining Gordon on the free agents list from 30 June are fellow goalkeepers at Sunderland Trevor Carson and Lewis King.

Manager Martin O'Neill has also decided to release defenders Liam Bagnall and Jordan Lavender, midfielders James Brace and Brett Elliott and strikers Jordan Cook and Oumare Tounkara.

Cook, 22, made three substitute appearances for the Black Cats and made his debut in a 2-0 defeat at Man Utd on Boxing Day 2010.

Sunderland have also announced on their official website that loan signings Nicklas Bendtner, Wayne Bridge and Sotirios Kyrgiakos have all returned to their parent clubs.

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Key Points

  • Sunderland release nine players, inlcuding £9m goalkeeper Craig Gordon
  • Scot Gordon ends five-year spell with Black Cats
  • He recently won Best Save in Premier League's 20 Seasons Awards