World news – GB – One-time Sunderland target Ross McCormack joins non-league Aldershot


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Former Sunderland target Ross McCormack will play his football in the Vanarama National League this season after signing for Aldershot.

The ex-Scotland international was a target for then Black Cats boss Simon Grayson in 2017, but Sunderland couldn’t agree a deal with Aston Villa over a transfer.

The 34-year-old frontman, who began his career at Rangers and joined Fulham from Leeds for £11million in July 2014 before heading for Aston Villa for £12million two years later, has now committed himself to Aldershot for the 2020-21 campaign.

A statement on the club’s official website said: « Aldershot Town are delighted to announce that Ross McCormack has agreed to commit to the club for the 2020-21 season!

« The former Scotland international has a very established career at Championship level, scoring lots of goals in a number of productive seasons for Cardiff City, Leeds United, Fulham and Aston Villa.

« Everyone at the club would like to welcome Ross on his commitment to the Shots for the 2020-21 season. »

McCormack was close to joining Sunderland in 2017, and in an interview with BBC Scotland last year, McCormack has revealed just how close he was to joining the Black Cats:

« I was literally at the training ground to sign and for money reasons – I think Aston Villa maybe wanted more than what Sunderland could pay – that was it and I went home, » he said.

McCormack went on to join Central Coast Mariners on loan, where he briefly played alongside 100m and 200m world record holder Usain Bolt, before returning to Britain to rejoin Motherwell on loan from the Villans.

In the documentary Sunderland Til I Die, former chief executive Martin Bain revealed why he pulled the plug on the deal.

« When it came to the transfer, the financial terms were completely different from Villa’s perspective and the wrong thing to do in the transfer window is jump in and commit to a lot of money, » Bain said.

McCormack, who has 13 senior caps, made just 24 appearances for Villa in a difficult three-year stay during which he was loaned out to Nottingham Forest, Australian clubs Melbourne City and Central Coast Mariners and later Motherwell before leaving in June last year.

He said: « It wasn’t a hard decision to make to be honest (on joining the club), but now is the right time to come back and get going again in England.

« Having spoken to Tanns [former Motherwell team-mate Craig Tanner], the gaffer and speaking to the staff and the lads here, I feel like it’s right place to do it. »


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