The Daily Mail says the view from Sunderland was that the proposed £5m transfer broke down because crowd favourite Cattermole, who had two years left on his £45,000-a-week contract, wanted a golden good-bye to leave the Stadium of Light.
Stoke's stance was that Sunderland changed their minds at the last minute. However the Midland club are understood to have been given permission by Sunderland to talk to Cattermole a lot earlier in the window, but prefer to wait until the last 24 hours to finalise moves.
Cattermole was close to agreeing personal terms and a fee had been agreed when Sunderland made their U-turn.
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