Sunderland manager Jack Ross has revealed to reporters that Duncan Watmore could make his long-awaited return from injury next week.
The past year has been a difficult one for the attacker as he has spent it on the sidelines nursing a knee injury.
The 24-year-old suffered cruciate ligament damage during a 2-2 draw with Millwall, but he is nearing optimum fitness.
As reported by The Chronicle, Watmore played an hour of the Under-23s’ match against Middlesbrough on Monday, and he is expected to feature in next week’s Checkatrade Trophy match against Notts County.
“Hopefully he will be involved in the Checkatrade. That is the plan at the moment. We were potentially looking at another U23 game but I spoke to Duncan prior to Monday.
“I was always keen for him to play this Tuesday but I’ve always wanted his opinion first, rather than me influence him in any way, and he put it to me that he would like to be involved in the squad for Tuesday’s game. That’s a first-team competitive game, so his involvement in that would be brilliant.”
There is always an element of doubt when a player returns to the pitch following a lengthy spell on the sidelines.
The forward was showing impressive skill for the Black Cats before he was struck down with the injury.
There is no reason why Watmore cannot pick up where he left off, but he may find it difficult to break into the team.
Check out the video below to see how Brazil fans reacted to being asked how Cristiano Ronaldo would perform for them in a hilarious prank by Playmaker FC…
Ross’s attacking talents, including Josh Maja and Aiden McGeady, have been in top form so far this season, and there is no need to fix what isn’t broken.
However, if Watmore shows promising signs, he will only add to the already-impressive dimensions.
Perhaps the former Manchester United youth star will end up playing a significant part in Sunderland’s promotion run.