David Moyes on Sunderland’s academy and giving youth a chance

Sunderland boss David Moyes. Picture by Frank Reid
Sunderland boss David Moyes. Picture by Frank Reid
Have your say

David Moyes has praised Sunderland’s academy and has pledged to continue giving younger players the chance to shine.

The international break has seen Jordan Pickford called into the senior England squad, Lynden Gooch win his first cap for the USA and fellow academy product turned-Liverpool skipper Jordan Henderson captain England.

It capped a good week for the club’s academy.

And Moyes insists younger players will continue to be given first-team opportunities – provided they prove they are good enough.

The Sunderland boss said: “I am making an advertisement; any parents with good young players they have a chance of getting a game at Sunderland at the moment!

“I used to say the same at Everton.

“We didn’t have a big squad, we had small numbers, but it gave a lot of young players the opportunity to get close to the first team.

“A lot of the young players are training with the first team now, regularly, and getting a chance to show what they can do.

“You could say at many big clubs that isn’t the case.

“We need to get players to a level to be good enough to play for Sunderland and be good enough to make a difference in the first team.

“Jordan Pickford certainly is, Lynden Gooch is showing he is up there at the moment as well.

“We want more of them. If that is the way we have to go, then so be it.”

Pickford, 22, has been Sunderland’s number one since Vito Mannone picked up an elbow injury, 20-year-old Gooch and Duncan Watmore, 22, have been regulars this season while 17-year-old Joel Asoro has played in the EFL Cup games.

Summer signings Paddy McNair and Donald Love, both 21, have also featured for the Black Cats.

“If you’re a young player, you’ve got a real chance of getting in the team,” added Moyes.

“I’ve always been a great believer in young players because they’re going to be your future, so you need to make sure you have an academy which can produce them.

“Sunderland have had an academy which have – Jordan Henderson just captained England – so I want to inspire the young players and for them to think that it they come to Sunderland the manager might put them in the team.

“I have to use that as a motivation to the parents and the young players out there.”

Follow today’s Stoke-Sunderland match on our live blog from 1pm