Chris Young column: Forget Kevin Nolan’s history, do Sunderland need another midfielder?

Kevin Nolan
Kevin Nolan
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Kevin Nolan would have to overcome painful memories of chicken dance celebrations, if he eventually does join Sunderland on a Bosman deal.

The out-of-contract 33-year-old is so closely associated with Newcastle United that it would initially be a hard sell for supporters used to identifying him as a pantomime villain.

Sam Allardyce has evidently deployed Nolan as his chief dressing room lieutenant for more than a decade of his managerial career and values his contribution on and off-the-field.

Nolan has that unteachable knack of scoring crucial goals too.

But setting aside Nolan’s previous at St James’s Park, do Sunderland actually need another midfielder?

With the arrival of Ola Toivonen, Sunderland addressed that attacking midfield deficiency during the summer, while Allardyce can also call upon Messrs Cattermole, Larsson, Gomez, Rodwell and M’Vila.

Centre-half and a defensively reliable left-back are clearly bigger shortcomings in this squad than the middle of the park.