American millionaire Ellis Short has taken shock control of Sunderland.
The Daily Telegraph says the Dallas-based millionaire Irish-American fund manager became the largest single shareholder in the Drumaville Consortium who own the North-East club.
Short, 48, is understood to own more than 30 per cent of the club after being invited to take advantage of a summer rights issue. Along with his fellow investors, the businessman, who was raised in Missouri, is thought to have injected £30 million into the club's summer transfer kitty for the purchase of players including Anton Ferdinand and El-Hadji Diouf.
A Sunderland spokesman said: "We do not comment on the Drumaville Consortium, except to thank them for their continued support for the club."