England Under-21 midfielder Grant Leadbitter has signed a new three-year contract with Sunderland.
The 22-year-old put pen to paper on a new deal today, which commits him to the Premier League club until 2011 at least.
Leadbitter, from nearby Fencehouses, scored two goals in 17 Barclays Premier League starts for the Black Cats last season and has impressed since Roy Keane arrived as manager in August 2006.
The midfielder, whose previous deal ran out in 2009, said: “I’m happy at the club and I want to help drive it forward next season, I want to kick on.”
Sunderland boss Keane added: “Grant’s done a good job since I came to the club. He’s got quality and he’s enthusiastic – a good character. He’s maturing well.”
Leadbitter is now Sunderland’s longest-serving player after making his debut in September 2003.
He has made 93 appearances for the Black Cats, scoring nine goals.