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Sunderland midfielder Julio Arca is aiming for a comeback in the final game of the season after denying claims that he is ready to quit Wearside.

Reports at the weekend suggested that the Argentinian 21-year-old had failed to settle in the north-east and would leave during the summer as a host of clubs, and in particular AS Roma, keep watch.

But the former Argentinos Juniors player has insisted he is going nowhere in a move which will come as a boost to under-fire Black Cats boss Peter Reid.

'I am very happy at Sunderland and have asked my doctor in Argentina if I can come back to play in Sunderland's last game of the season against Derby, if the manager needs me,' he told the club's official website, www.safc.com, from South America.

'I'm grateful to Peter Reid as he's made me into an attacking midfield player, a position I now play in for my national team, rather than the defensive position I played back in Argentina.'

Arca has been allowed to return to Argentina as he works to shake off the groin injury which has limited him to just 15 starts so far this season.

His early form made him one of the finds of his first season in English football, but Reid is conscious that he and compatriot Nicolas Medina, another £3.5million acquisition, have never really been allowed time to recover from the rigours of their triumphant World Under-20s Championship campaign.

He is convinced that both will return from their summer break fighting fit and ready to show what they can do.

'Nicolas is physically getting stronger, but as a player, he's got no problem,' Reid said recently.

'He can handle the ball, he's a good footballer.'

Article courtesy of soccernet.com
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