Ex-Rangers boss Dick Advocaat tells Sunderland’s ex-Celtic star Adam Matthews to work on defending

Adam Matthews
Adam Matthews

Dick Advocaat has warned new boy Adam Matthews he must improve his defensive work if he is to become a first-team star at Sunderland.

Matthews became Sunderland’s second signing of the summer when he completed a £2million move from Celtic on Friday.

I like to attack but the manager has already told me I need to work on my defending so I’ll try my best to do that


The Welshman is renowned as a pacy, attacking full-back, which fitted the bill for Advocaat.

The Black Cats boss wanted a more offensive option at right-back as part of the system he wants to adopt at Sunderland, and was one of the reasons he decided not to offer Frenchman Anthony Reveillere a new contract at the end of the season.

But while he is delighted to have secured the services of Matthews, Advocaat has warned the 23-year-old that he must tighten up defensively if he is to succeed in the Premier League.

Matthews said: “He (Advocaat) just said ‘we’ve been watching you for a while, I like what I see but you’ve got to work on a few things and hopefully I can make you a better player’.

“I’m sure he’ll be able to do that and with the players here I can only improve. I’m very excited to just get started.

“I like to attack but the manager has already told me I need to work on my defending so I’ll try my best to do that.

“I like to get on the ball, I like to get forward and hopefully score a few goals.”

Sunderland moved for Matthews after it appeared Carl Jenkinson wanted to return to West Ham next season, despite the Black Cats having agreed a loan fee with Arsenal.

Director of football Lee Congerton and his scouting team had been keeping tabs on Matthews for a while, but the move still came as a surprise to the defender.

“It’s been very exciting. It happened really quickly which has been a bit of a shock,” Matthews admitted.

“Playing in the Barclays Premier League and in front of great fans and in a big stadium is something I’m looking forward to.

“Obviously, playing at Celtic I’m used to massive crowds and I’m sure they’ll be just as good if not better here so I’m really looking forward to it.”