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THE NEW MAN IN THE MIDDLE

Sunderland have announced the signing of experienced midfielder Alan Browne. We’ve looked over his career and what he will bring to the Black Cat’s team.

Browne started his career with the Cork City U19 squad before quickly graduating to the senior squad. He was named on the substitutes’ bench twice in the 2013 season for games against Sligo Rovers and Drogheda United, but he failed to cement his position in the starting lineup

On 1st January 2014 Browne signed an 18-month contract with Preston North End in League One. He made his first-team debut on 25 March 2014, coming on as a substitute in a 3–1 victory against Peterborough United, his performance and work ethic drew praise from then manager Simon Grayson.

Over the next few years Browne worked hard to hold down a place in the first team and became a major part of the Preston squad throughout the 2017–18 season, scoring eight goals. This led to him earning the clubs Player of the Year award.

In the 2020–21 season Browne was appointed club captain following the departure of Tom Clarke. In January 2021, Browne signed a new three-and-a-half-year deal, keeping him with The Lilywhites until the end of the 2023–24 season.

During his time at Preston, Browne made over 400 appearances for the club, with 346 being in the Championship, making him one of the most experienced players in the league. That kind of experience is something Sunderland have been screaming out for, a player that can calm things down when needed, dictate the play and pull some strings is what we’re getting.

Having him in the middle will help us avoid the midfield being overrun, forcing defenders to be pulled out of position and leaving gaps in behind, which is something we saw happen too often last season. His game is not all about defending though, he also chips in with goals and assists, last season he got four of both.

In signing Browne the club has given fans exactly what we’ve been asking for in the middle of the park.

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