Date: 12th June 2007 at 9:30am
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Former Colchester United player Greg Halford yesterday completed a bizarre switch to newly-promoted Sunderland for a reported £3.5 million, guaranteeing the Essex team an unexpected cash windfall.

Halford, 22, became Roy Keane`s first summer signing just six months after joining the Royals for around £2.5 million and will leave having played just three times in all for the London club.

Reading`s director Nicky Hammond explained that Greg, also an Under 20 international and an outside bet potentially for the England squad, had not made the desired impact during his short spell at the Madejski stadium.

He said: “It’s fair to say that Greg did not make the impact here that both he and ourselves would have liked.”

“Sometimes in football, players do move on quickly if it’s felt that the fit isn’t quite right. But this is absolutely no reflection on Greg as a person or as a player. He has been a very good professional during his short time with us.

“From a purely financial perspective, this is an excellent deal for us with a good upside on our initial investment in January,” added Hammond.

On the move itself, Greg Halford said yesterday: “It’s great to be here. The set-up at Sunderland is phenomenal and I cannot wait to get going. I have had a taste of the Premiership with Reading, and I want more.”