Hull City have completed the signing of experienced midfielder Sebastian Larsson on a free transfer following the expiration of his contract at Sunderland. The 32-year-old has signed a one-year deal at the KCOM Stadium and will now be looking forward to forcing his way into Leonid Slutsky’s side.
The midfielder had a very successful spell at Sunderland where he made over 200 appearances during his six-year spell at the Stadium of Light. This included a number of high and lows with the club’s relegation from the Premier League last season coming as the most recent disappointment.
We take a look at the reasons why Larsson could prove to be an astute addition for the Tigers this season.
A new lease of life for Larsson
It is remarkable how many times players regain form after moving to a new club for a fresh start. There are many players who will be hoping this theory is true in the upcoming campaign with Wayne Rooney moving back to Everton, John Terry to Aston Villa and so on. Both of these players are nearing the end of their careers but are looking for one last challenge.
This is the exact mindset that Larsson will have had when signing his one-year deal at Hull. He will not want to end his career on a disappointment and will be hoping he can challenge for promotion back to the top flight with the Tigers. The atmosphere at Sunderland was often a toxic one last season, and Larsson will be pleased to have a clean slate with Hull after failing to impress in his last few years with Black Cats.
A much-needed signing for City
Hull got their 2017/18 Championship campaign off to a promising start on Saturday evening as they claimed a valuable point in a 1-1 draw against promotion favourites Aston Villa at Villa Park. However, it was still evident that Hull need to strengthen in certain positions before the transfer window slams shut.
Slutsky has so far added the likes of Callum Burton, Liam Edwards, Ondrej Mazuch and Kevin Stewart to his squad. However, these additions are not enough to transform City into promotion contenders. This is why it was vital that they signed a player of Larsson’s calibre. Despite this, the addition of Larsson should only be a start, and the club’s hierarchy need to back Slutsky further in this window if they are expecting an immediate return to the top flight.
A set-piece specialist with a wealth of experience
One area which Larsson is most well-known for is his set-piece ability which he presented on numerous occasions in the top flight. He scored a total of 14 goals for Sunderland during his time at the club, with a number of these coming from free-kicks. Championship sides will certainly be wary about giving cheap free-kicks away against Sunderland this season.
Larsson’s experience could be vital to Hull this season. He has played for the likes of Arsenal, Birmingham City and most recently Sunderland in his career and has racked up a huge amount of appearances at the highest level. He can pass on his experience to the club’s younger players as well as being a key influence in the dressing room.