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Sunderland: Mowbray should unleash Max Thompson

Sunderland have been crying out for a striker in the absence of Ellis Simms, who was brought off following an injury to his toe in their win over Reading.

The on-loan forward had scored three times in the Championship before being struck down, and was leading the line with a poise and power that belied his age.

Should Sunderland give Max Thompson a chance?

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Yes

No

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Perhaps Tony Mowbray could use the opportunity of his absence and a poor showing from Elliot Embleton last weekend, to unleash an exciting talent from his academy, with striker Max Thompson the obvious candidate.

The 20-year-old joined from Burnley following a seven and ten-goal haul in his past two seasons in the Premier League 2.

Upon joining the Black Cats, he described himself as a “goalscorer and a direct player”, something which for all the praise they have received, Mowbray’s side are certainly lacking without Simms.

He has taken to life on Wearside exceptionally well it seems, as he already has three goals and one assist in his opening three games for the U23s side.

The ability to score goals at any level demands a certain level of skill, and if given the chance, he could convert his proficiency at youth level into goals for his senior side.

He already has suggested his possession of a lethal touch, and actually briefly featured once in the Premier League for the Clarets’ first team, outlining the fact that they clearly believed in his ability to soon be challenging the starting squad.

The fact that the Black Cats then tempted him to join them marks an impressive pull that they still have despite their relegations, and now that they have secured him, he should certainly be given a chance should Simms continue to suffer.

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Thompson actually started his career at Everton, which makes him even more eerily similar to Simms.

That said, the 21-year-old will inevitably return to his parent club following the conclusion of this season and if Thompson hasn’t already received minutes as a result of current injuries, it will then definitely be time for the young Sunderland striker to step up and prove himself to Mowbray.