When you collect Sunderland’s transfer business from the last decade into one neat pile, it doesn’t particularly paint a pretty picture.
Whether your name is Danny Graham, Jozy Altidore or Jack Rodwell, you all form part of a rather disastrous point in the football club’s history.
That being said, there is arguably none worse than a certain Will Grigg, someone who Sunderland were desperate to buy and are now desperate to get rid of.
On paper, he looked like an inspirational piece of business when he arrived in 2019. The Mackems had just lost Josh Maja to Bordeaux and they needed a proven goalscorer to fire them to promotion.
Considering Grigg had netted 26 goals the season prior to his arrival, you wouldn’t have bet against him scoring regularly at the Stadium of Light.
Even if Sunderland hadn’t paid an extortionate fee for his services, he would have been a waste of money. Stewart Donald made several bids for the former Wigan striker before the Black Cats eventually coughed up £4m on transfer deadline day.
Tony Coton sat back in his chair in despair as Donald paid considerably over the odds for a player of his ability.
The Sunderland hierarchy thought he’d deliver on the big stage and ultimately put them in the Championship. Though, they couldn’t have been more wrong.
Grigg finished the 2018/19 campaign with just four league goals. Since then, he has found the net on just four more occasions for the Mackems in what has been a torrid spell in the north-east. His Sunderland career has been so poor that even Kevin Phillips had some choice words for the Northern Irishman.
The Sunderland hero said earlier this season: “There was not one thing that I saw him do well. No real work rate and at times it was like he was hiding. But when they start back there will be no crowd there and that might help him because it looked to me as if the crowd really affected him.”
Indeed, the significant slump in his value since he signed says it all. For a player that cost Sunderland a whopping £4m, he is now worth just £1.08m according to Transfermarkt; a fall in valuation of 75%.
Grigg is now on loan at MK Dons where he is at least beginning to find the net again. Under Russell Martin, the forward has scored three times and registered three assists in six starts.
That will do little to please those at Sunderland, however. Once the summer window comes round, he should be one of the first out the door.
Unfortunately, the £6k-per-week forward will leave having cost the club more than they could arguably have afforded.