Sunderland’s January transfer window dealings began on the opening day of the month as striker Ji Dong-Won was allowed to join Bundesliga strugglers FC Augsburg on loan until the end of the season, according to the team's website.
The 21-year-old South Korean international striker has not featured in an EPL game for Sunderland this season, but is a cult figure in the Northeast thanks to his injury-time winning goal in the 1-0 success over eventual champions Manchester City last season. Ironically, his loan move to Augsburg was confirmed on New Year’s Day, exactly 12 months to the day since he netted that winner over City.
Ji will spend the remainder of the campaign attempting to haul Augsburg out of the deep trouble they have found themselves in having picked up just nine points from the opening 17 Bundesliga games. Augsburg have won just one game, finding the net only 12 times all season, and will be hoping he can spark a turnaround in fortunes.
Ji, signed by former Sunderland manager Steve Bruce in a £2 million deal from Chunnam Dragons at the start of the 2011/12 EPL season, has played only 21 times for Sunderland. In addition to his goal against City, he also scored a consolation in a 2-1 defeat to Chelsea. He also earned a bronze medal at the 2012 Olympics after helping his country finish in third place.
Ji’s temporary departure is the start of Martin O’Neill’s transfer window activity, with midfielder David Meyler also expected to leave by turning his loan spell with Championship side Hull City into a permanent move.