The Black Cats are facing the prospect of an incredibly busy week as they search for a new manager, have two Championship matches, and have deadline day to deal with.
Kristjaan Speakman is currently on the prowl for Alex Neil’s successor in the dugout after the Scot opted to ditch the Stadium of Light in order to seal a move to Stoke.
This has left the club without a permanent manager for what could be the rest of the window. Therefore, the sporting director will need to bring players in who he feels will improve the squad for any potential manager, rather than signing specific ones that the head coach wants.
Speakman could seal a masterclass in this regard by striking a deal to sign Matej Kovar on loan from Manchester United.
It has been reported that the club are tempted to make a swoop for the 22-year-old, who is set to leave Old Trafford, on a temporary basis and he could be an eye-catching signing.
Red Devils youth coach Neil Wood previously heaped praise on the youngster’s attitude, saying:
“He’s really hard on himself, he’s an ultimate professional who doesn’t like making mistakes which not many keepers do.
“But the amount of times he’s kept us in games, and he’s so calm from the back playing out and he can pick passes short and long. Keepers do make mistakes but he’s just going to learn from that, stay confident and move forward.”
This suggests that he would be a dream for any incoming manager to work with because of his professionalism and strong mindset.
The stopper also has the quality to be an excellent signing after he enjoyed a stellar loan spell with Burton Albion in the second half of last season in League One, averaging a SofaScore rating of 7.38. He kept four clean sheets in six outings and saved a whopping 83% of the shots that he faced.
Anthony Patterson, meanwhile, averaged a score of 6.88 in the third tier for Sunderland last term and saved 70% of the shots against him. He has stepped up to the Championship and let his standards dip as he is averaging a rating of 6.78 and has a save success rate of 65%.
These statistics suggest that the Manchester United man has the potential to be an upgrade on the Black Cats’ number one if he can replicate his performance for Burton. He has shown that he has the ability to save a high percentage of shots whilst putting in strong performances each week.
This means that he could come in and push Patterson for his place in the team, which may well spur the Englishman to up his game or result in the Czech becoming the number one.
Therefore, this could be a masterclass of a deal from Speakman as he would be creating strong competition for places and potentially improving the team without needing to splash out on a permanent transfer.