Whether or not Sunderland are promoted this season, they already have plans in mind for how they’ll attack the transfer market.
According to The Daily Mail, Sunderland will explore the possibility of signing Dion Sanderson on a permanent transfer in the summer.
The £7k-per-week earner is currently on loan from Wolves and has had to wait patiently until the New Year to really be given a chance of regular football at the Stadium of Light.
However, the club have clearly been impressed with what they’ve seen from the defender.
It’s understood that Sanderson is open to a move away in the summer so that he can continue his progression. Competition for places at Wolves are steep so joining Sunderland permanently would probably be a wise idea.
After the youngster’s first few months at the club, it didn’t look as though he’d have what it takes to sufficiently play for the Mackems.
Though, since Lee Johnson’s arrival he’s been thoroughly impressive, mainly earning chances through circumstance. He got a rare chance at left-back with injuries to Denver Hume and Callum McFadzean before a trio of issues to Bailey Wright, Jordan Willis and Tom Flanagan saw him operated at centre-back.
Sanderson is a full-back by trade but he’s stood out in the middle, stepping in for Wright admirably. In fact, he’s been outstanding in the last few months, demonstrating a supreme ability to win aerial duels. The 21-year-old has won 24 battles in the air in his last ten outings alone.
Consider his versatility and his ability to perform consistently, Kristjaan Speakman simply has to build the future of the club around him.
Sunderland’s other centre backs have struggled for fitness, as too have the club’s full-backs. Sanderson, on the other hand, has been fully fit since October.
He’s a player that’s also earned rave reviews from Stephen Elliot. He took to Twitter after the Black Cats’ win over Fleetwood to say: “Dion Sanderson has a huge future in the game. Best on loan player I’ve seen at the club since Johnny Evans. Wise beyond his years on the pitch.”
That’s quite the statement to make, but if anything sums up why Sunderland must build their future around him, that is it.
Sanderson has pace, power and elegance, possessing the ability to play out from the back too. With that in mind, he could fit a variety of styles and systems. He is a manager’s dream.
Speakman must bring him back next summer.