Sunderland-born Steve Howey believes that the loss of Charlie Wyke is going to be a major blow for the Black Cats.
Following a goal-shy first two seasons at Sunderland, the striker scored 31 times in League One last season to help the north-east giants finish in the top-six.
However, despite being named as the club’s Player of the Year, Wyke he rejected the opportunity to extend his stay at the Stadium of Light and was therefore available to sign on a free transfer.
And Wigan did exactly that, securing Wyke’s services earlier this month, leaving Sunderland manager Lee Johnson with a tough job on his hands to replace his goals ahead of their fourth straight season at League One level.
Howey exclusively told Football FanCast:
“Well, it’s a blow, if somebody scores 30 goals a season, it’s going to be a blow. But the lad got his move from it.
“But Sunderland are in a situation where they can’t afford to be paying players sums of money that if you’ve had a good season, you’re going to get offered by other teams.”
With Wigan in the same division as Sunderland, this did appear a surprise move for Wyke and one that he perhaps accepted due to the Latics offering a better financial package.
In terms of chances of getting promoted, the Black Cats are firm favourites to end their stay at League One level and win the title, whilst Wigan are expected to challenge for the top-six.