Sunderland wanted Gignac
Andre-Pierre Gignac had the chance to join Sunderland after missing out on a transfer deadline day move to Fulham.
By Patrick Haond
Last Updated: 02/09/11 11:39am
Marseille striker Andre-Pierre Gignac has revealed he had the chance to join Sunderland after missing out on a transfer deadline day move to Fulham.
The France international striker met with manager Martin Jol and had a medical at Craven Cottage, but l'OM refused to sanction the deal having failed to find a replacement.
No sooner had Gignac's potential move to Fulham been curtailed than Sunderland came knocking and he claims they were willing to part company with Asamoah Gyan in a swap deal.
However, the 25-year-old was against moving to the Stadium of Light after missing out on his Fulham switch and never spoke to anyone from the Black Cats about a transfer.
Gignac is now back with Marseille and following clear-the-air talks with manager Didier Deschamps he is determined to give his best for the club, although the failed Cottagers move has left a sour taste in his mouth.
"Last Tuesday I was asked by the club to come and talk with my agent. We were told l'OM wanted to sign a forward so they would then be listening to offers for me," he told L'Equipe.
"We were told about Olympiakos and Fulham. I decided to listen to the London side. We went there and immediately we felt their interest was concrete and serious. We were interested. We spent the evening with coach Martin Jol and his wife.
"On Wednesday we had a medical. It was a wonderful welcome. So on Wednesday it was all okay. Fulham agreed with l'OM.
"At 11:30 pm they called me to say I have to go back to Marseille because my forward replacement would not come! I was in London so called to help l'OM sign a forward, but it could not be resolved.
"Three minutes after calling me to come back to Marseille, I was called again as there was an opportunity to go to Sunderland. I could not reply yes to Sunderland and no to Fulham, because l'OM just made the decision of a swap deal with Gyan!
"At Fulham they wanted me. I didn't see anyone at Sunderland. I'm not a mercenary. I'm not angry, but I have a bitter taste in my mouth.
"I've already talked to Didier Deschamps. He knows what I'm thinking. We spoke like two adults without resentment or hostility, even if what happened is not great.
"I have no problem. They couldn't sign a forward, but I am happy to be at Marseille. I know my worth. I will set the record straight. I am not useless as I've read. I have desire to show I am the forward they looked for."