Gary Rowell: Sunderland must throw caution to the wind and start Will Grigg and Charlie Wyke together

Yet another 1-1 draw on Saturday, this time at Oxford, the fifth out of the last seven league fixtures, left everybody connected with Sunderland - players, managers and not least fans - massively frustrated as yet again points were thrown away from a winning position.

Monday, 11th February 2019, 5:00 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th February 2019, 5:08 am
Sunderland striker Will Grigg.

Sunderland haven’t been convincing for a while now, even the wins amongst all those draws have just been by a single goal and you have to go back to December to find a Sunderland league win by a bigger margin than just one goal.

With five new players arriving in January, it has definitely bolstered the squad but has it also had the effect of complicating team selection because as soon as Sunderland find their best starting XI and a system that suits them best, the better.

SAFC coverage in association with John Hogg.

I was surprised when the team was announced before the Oxford game, when Will Grigg was up front on his own, as I thought Jack Ross would have had Grigg alongside Charlie Wyke as a partnership and feeding off each other.

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I know there are lots of games coming up and different players will be called upon but both Wyke and Grigg look, to me, the type of players who would prefer to be in a partnership and probably we will see that soon.

Wyke and Grigg are – after all – the club’s two major signings this campaign and how the fans would love it if they could be a sort of League One Quinn and Phillips.

At the back, Jon McLaughlin was again outstanding, how many times has that been said this season?

What a signing he has been and an even newer recruit at the back Jimmy Dunne, he is looking the part and also scored from a set piece and that is something we need to do more often.

Sunderland continued their run of scoring in every game but at the same time haven’t scored more than one in a game in what seems an age so maybe throwing caution to the wind and unleashing from the start two strikers up top might kick-start Sunderland, especially with the next three fixtures all being at home.