Sunderland AFC briefing - Transfer latest plus why George Honeyman and Lynden Gooch are an inspiration

Sunderland's hopes of keeping hold of top scorer Lewis Grabban look to have been boosted after it emerged Wolves are not targeting him in January.

Thursday, 7th December 2017, 11:13 am
Updated Monday, 11th December 2017, 10:05 pm
Lewis Grabban gets words of encouragement from Chris Coleman.

Grabban is currently on a season-long loan from Premier League Bournemouth but the Cherries have a recall clause which would allow them to end the loan early in January.

There was reported interest in Grabban from a number of Championship clubs.

Lewis Grabban gets words of encouragement from Chris Coleman.

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Fulham are also keen on Grabban, though.

Meanwhile, as first revealed by the Echo, Bolton Wanderers striker Gary Madine is understood to be on Sunderland’s January transfer radar but Bolton are confident of keeping hold of him should Sunderland make a move.

The 27-year-old has scored six goals in 21 appearances for Bolton this season including two in their 3-1 win over Barnsley last weekend and once in the 3-3 draw at the Stadium of Light, which was Simon Grayson’s last game in charge of Sunderland.

Lewis Grabban gets words of encouragement from Chris Coleman.

The target man joined Bolton in the summer of 2015 and signed a new two-year deal in May to extend his stay at the Macron Stadium.

Reports in the North West say sources at Bolton question whether Sunderland would have the financial muscle to make them even consider a deal.

Cash-strapped Sunderland will be severely limited financially in the transfer market and Chris Coleman knows he will have to box clever when the January window opens.

Liverpool duo goalkeeper Danny Ward and forward Ben Woodburn - both of who played a part under Coleman in the Wales set-up - feature prominently in Coleman’s thoughts.

Sunderland Under-23s host Liverpool this Sunday

Sunderland Under-23s host Liverpool at the Stadium of Light on Sunday lunchtime (Noon KO) in Premier League 2.

Season card holders can get free access for the game.

Ticket prices for non-season card holders are £3 for adults and £1 for over 65s and under 16s on entry.

Under-23 midfielder Ethan Robson has been nominated for the Premier League 2 Player of the Month award for November.

Robson enjoyed an impressive month across a range of competitions, featuring in the PL2, PL Cup, PL International Cup and the Checkatrade Trophy, while also frequently training with Chris Coleman’s squad.

In September, the 20-year-old made his senior debut against Everton in the Carabao Cup and one week later he featured in the Sky Bet Championship, coming off the bench in a home defeat to Cardiff City.

Phil Foden (Man City), Jake Hesketh (Southampton), Harry McKirdy (Aston Villa), Adam Phillips (Norwich) have also been nominated and the winner will be announced on 15 December.

And finally...

Joel Asoro draws inspiration from George Honeyman and Lynden Gooch who have progressed through the ranks at Sunderland.

The trio all played together at Under-23 level, but Honeyman and Gooch have established themselves in the first team this season.

Eighteen-year-old Asoro, with seven first- team appearances under his belt this season, said: "To see players like George Honeyman and Lynden Gooch step up, it can help you a lot.

"I’ve been training with them and playing alongside them at Under-23 level and they have now taken the next step into the first team.

"You never know, maybe I can do it now too."