Kristjaan Speakman explains Benji Kimpioka call as youngster heads on loan to the National League
Sunderland youngster Benji Kimpioka has joined Torquay United on loan.
Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman says it is a ‘great opportunity’ for the 21-year-old to get competitive minutes after a recent hamstring injury.
Kimpioka recently returned to full fitness and has been a part of the first-team environment under new Head Coach Lee Johnson named on the bench for the Papa John’s Trophy final win over Tranmere Rovers.
He had been in superb form before suffering his injury, making a significant impression in the U23 side after finally ending a long stand-off over a new contract and his future at the club.
He joins a Torquay United side third in the National League, six points off Sutton United, who have played one game less.
Torquay are managed by Gary Johnson.
Sunderland have the option to recall Kimpioka after 28 days, if required.
"Benji has missed a significant period of the season and we are delighted that he’s now returned to full fitness,” Speakman said.
"We are keen for him to obtain more games in a competitive setting and based upon the point we are at in the season, this is a great opportunity for him.”
Gary Johnson said: “We’re grateful to Sunderland for the loan of Kimpioka.
“He first came to my attention when Lee went to Sunderland. He was injured at the time, and we felt now was the right time for all three parties to make this move.
“He’s a striker with excellent pace, and gives us very good options for our strike force during a very important and hectic game schedule.”