Sunderland yesterday brought the curtain down on Danny Graham’s career at the Stadium of Light, with the striker joining Blackburn Rovers on loan until the end of the season.
Graham joins goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon in leaving Sunderland this week, but they are not expected to be the last of the departures, as Sam Allardyce looks to free up funds on the wage bill by cutting ties with the likes of Matthews, Jordi Gomez and Valentin Roberge.
Full-back Matthews - who arrived from Celtic in a £2million summer move - is being tracked by a pair of clubs in the Championship, one at either end of the table.
Matthews is fit again after an ankle injury and played in a behind-closed-doors encounter against Sheffield United on Tuesday.
Yet the Welsh international has endured a miserable time on Wearside since arriving from Celtic, with the 24-year-old not featuring for the first-team since August.
Sunderland would potentially have to pay a portion of Matthews’ wages if he was to head out on loan, as they are doing with Graham, with Blackburn only covering around half of the latter’s salary at Ewood Park.
Graham had started two of Sunderland’s last three games, yet Allardyce was eager to move the ex-Middlesbrough man on.
With Graham’s contract at the Stadium of Light expiring this summer, the loan switch will end his time on Wearside, where he netted just once in 41 appearances after arriving in a £5million move from Swansea three years ago.
Graham said: “I was aware of the interest in the background and obviously I’ve been playing a bit at Sunderland the last few weeks, so I’m coming here with games under my belt, which is also pleasing.
“For me to get out of Sunderland and have a fresh challenge is superb for me, so I’m delighted to get it done.
“I can’t wait to get going and hopefully we can pull together and move up the table.”