Everton’s lavish spending this summer, as is often the case in the Premier League, has inevitably reduced first-team opportunities at Goodison Park for some of the club’s vibrant contingent of young players, which is partly why Brendan Galloway and Tyias Browning have found themselves out on loan again this season – both signing for recently relegated Sunderland.
The Black Cats are looking to bounce back from not only a horrendous 2016/17 season in the Premier League but also several years of stagnation and decline, which made their exit from the top flight at the end of last term seem somewhat inevitable.
Whilst the new era at the Stadium of Light didn’t exactly kick off with a bang last Friday night, Simon Grayson’s side claimed a solid point against a team many are tipping to push for a playoff spot at a bare minimum this season in the form of Derby County, who finished last term in strong form following the appointment of Gary Rowett.
Although Galloway was culpable for the first goal in a 1-1 draw, allowing Johnny Russell to cut inside him before squaring the ball into the eventual path of goalscorer Bradley Johnson, the rest of the left-back’s performance will have impressed Everton and Sunderland fans alike.
Indeed, the 21-year-old finished up with the most touches and successful dribbles of any Sunderland player, alongside the most tackles to his name of any player on the pitch, highlighting the athleticism and defensive awareness he offers from No.3.
With Leighton Baines never too far from the injury table, Everton facing the added burden of Europa League football this season and Ronald Koeman recently revealing he wants to sign a left-sided defender who can play at left-back and centre-back (like Galloway), the Toffees boss may come to regret letting Galloway leave on loan if the youngster’s strong start to the season continues.