10. Marcos Angeleri
There's a few different theories as to why Angeleri's time on Wearside has been unsuccessful to say the least, one of which is that we didn't really want him - and Quinn made a balls up of the whole thing so we ended up stuck with him. How true that is I don't know, however I do think there's more to this than meets they eye. He's represented Argentina four times and reportedly failed a medical at Inter Milan a couple of year ago, having said that though, Jonas Gutierrez (Marcos' long lost brother, surely?) is one of the first names on the Argentinian team sheet. We paid roughly £1.5m for the right back, money which isn't a lot in today's market, but it's certainly unnecessary expenditure. The only thing that has stopped Angeleri being higher up in my list of flops is that he may actually play for us again - God forbid. For now, though, his future is lying in the balance, it looks as if he'll be on his way back to South America. That would suit us fine.
9. Greg Halford
There were no theories about this signing, the sole reason for him being a flop, in my opinion, was his lack of ability. He was signed from then Premier League side Reading for a fee of £3.5m, he went on to play 8 times for the lads - scoring twice. I don't actually remember a lot about him tbh, other than him being poor and having a long throw, which he didn't really use that much anyway, not that he had much of the chance to anyway. I'd say that Halford was a typical 'Roy Keane signing'. Just not good enough. After those 8 appearances, Keane said that he was willing to listen to offers for the services of Halford, despite being excited by the signing just a few months earlier. Charlton came in for him on loan and he moved to The Valley till the end of the season. Upon returning to Sunderland, we failed to get rid of him permanently again and he ended up back on loan at Sheffield United. We eventually offloaded him to Wolves in 2009.
8. Kelvin Davis
I have to admit, when we signed Kelvin from Ipswich I thought it was a bargain buy. He cost us around £1.25m and I thought it was money well spent by Mick McCarthy. Sadly it wasn't to be, he came with a reputation of being 'a decent keeper' and I'd thought this when watching him play for Ipswich. The thing that did leave my slightly baffled though, was that MicMac had let two very good goalkeepers in Mhyre and Poom go, to bring Kelvin in. He appeared 33 times for the lads in a season that we'd all rather forget, as we suffered relegation with a measly and record low 15 points. Following this, he was sold to Southampton where he would attempt to resurrect his career, we amazingly got the majority of what we paid for him back - moving south for approximately £1m.
7. Jon Stead
Stead will be forever remembered for being the forward that just couldn't score, well, he did, twice. In 35 games. Stead was a target for Sunderland when he played for Huddersfield and he was widely regarded as a hot prospect, Blackburn Rovers beat us to his signature though and he was signed for £1m. However it seemed that Sunderland and Stead were destined to meet, it was just meant to be, and we eventually got our man in June 2005, as he completed a £1.8m switch to Wearside. As I mentioned before, Stead only found the net twice for Sunderland, his first goal came in a 2-2 draw at Goodison Park, his second and final goal was in the 3-1 defeat to Southend in the following season. Stead didn't fit into the plans of new manager Roy Keane and he was loaned out to Derby, where he scored one more than he did at Sunderland, in 16 games less! He was later sold to Ipswich Town for £1.2m.
6. Rade Prica
The Swede was signed from Danish side Aalborg for a fee of around £2m. He was snapped up by Keane after Prica finished the 2006/2007 season as top scorer in Denmark, and with International experience behind him it could surely be nothing other than a bargain. Wrong. It was shocking business in hindsight. He played 6 times for Sunderland, making his debut in a 2-0 home win over Birmingham City, guess what? He scored. It looked to be a sign of things to come as Prica lifted the ball over the Birmingham goalkeeper to seal an important victory. The following game, however, would be a more realistic sign of things to come. Price was brought on as substitute for the injured Kieran Richardson at Anfield, before later being substituted himself for being absolutely shocking. We eventually offloaded Rade to Rosenborg in Norway, and he finished the season as their top goalscorer with 17.
5. Arnau Riera
Arnau Riera was unbelievably signed by Spanish giants Barcelona in a bid to regain Premier League status following relegation. He played just once for Sunderland, as you can't count his second appearance - getting sent off inside 3 minutes in the League Cup game away to Bury. He would never play again. He was then shipped out to Southend United on a month's loan, where he played twice, before going to Falkirk on loan, which was quite a success. He returned to Sunderland and was told he was free to find a new club. He had an unsuccessful trial at Blackpool before being loaned to Falkirk again. He was released in 2009.
4. William Mocquet
William Mocquet really is the mystery man. Aged 23, he chose to accept the offer tabled by Sunderland and make the move from his homeland, France, to Wearside. His old club Le Havre agreed an undisclosed fee for the midfielder with Sunderland and he completed the move in August 2006. The most bizarre thing about this is he never ever played for Sunderland, not even once. He was loaned out to League 2 club Rochdale where he played 7 times and scored once. Upon returning to Sunderland, he was quickly shown the door again and he was on the move to Bury, in the same league as Rochdale, where he would play 9 times. Upon being released by Sunderland, he signed for FC Pau in the 4th tier of France.
3. Tore André Flo
Tore André Flo was signed by manager Peter Reid in 2002 on the final day of the transfer window, for a fee of £6.75m from Rangers. The reason he is so high up in my list of flops is because of the extortionate price that we were forced to pay the Glasgow club for his services, not because he was a particularly bad player. His career achievements suggested otherwise, turning out for Chelsea nearly 150 times. However he only played 33 times for the lads, managing just 6 goals, nowhere near enough for the price we paid. He fell out of favour after the departure of Reid, and following Sunderland's relegation, he was released and moved to Siena in Italy.
2. Nicolás Medina
The most expensive player to never play a league game for Sunderland, £3.5m to be precise. He was signed, again, by Peter Reid in 2001, hooking up with Argentina U21 team mate Julio Arca. Fans and pundits often questioned Reid's decision not to give him a chance, and some thought this was down to a fall out between the two. He did eventually make an appearance in the red and white shirt, playing in an FA Cup game against Bolton Wanderers, he was substituted in the game. He played regularly for Argentina U21's and played once for the seniors. As his spell on Wearside was unsuccessful to say the least, he was loaned to CD Leganés, before permanently signing for Spanish side Real Murcia.
1. Milton Núnez
Yeah, you guessed it, in first position in my list of flops is Honduran forward Milton Nunez. Nunez was signed by Peter Reid in 1999 for a fee that nobody knows, or if they do, are too scared to admit to. He played once for Sunderland in the league, and that was in a 2-1 win at home to Wimbledon. He's become somewhat of a cult hero on Wearside, well, I see it more as a running joke, this is mainly due to his size and lack appearances/ability. Rumour has it; Reid was meant to sign Nunez's strike partner at previous club PAOK FC, Adolfo Valencia. The rumour is that there was another Milton Nunez and Reid had signed the wrong one. I suppose we'll never know the real truth. After his spell in England, he returned to Uruguay side Nacional, who he had left in 1998. Today, Milton plays his football for CSD Comunicaciones who play in the highest league in Guatemala. That's according to wikipedia, how whoever has written that knows where he plays God only knows.