Teemu Tainio signs for Sunderland

This news has been greeted with fanfare, street parties and celebratory gunfire in parts of the Finnish football community. Too many Finnish players move abroad and rot in the reserves, and Tainio has been desperate to play some games for a long time now. Roy Keane was very happy, according to the Guardian.

“The fact he has played more than 40 international games shows he has a lot to offer,” Keane said. Teemu has shown versatility, playing in different midfield positions for both Tottenham and his previous club Auxerre.”

That is true, but he is effectively a midfield holding player not dissimilar to Keane himself. If he gets a run of games in that position he will do very well for Sunderland, and his potentially increased match fitness will be excellent for Finland too. With Mika Väyrynen also changing clubs this summer, Finland’s midfield could be as strong as it’s been in a long time for the autumn internationals against Germany and Russia.

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