Kristjaan Speakman reveals first-team plan for Anthony Patterson as youngster signs new deal
Promising goalkeeper Anthony Patterson has signed a new long-term deal on Wearside.
Sunderland activated a clause in the deal Patterson signed last summer to keep under terms for the current campaign, but have rewarded his eye-catching progress with fresh, improved terms.
The 21-year-old has signed a two-year deal, with the options of a further year.
Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman has said that Patterson will return for pre-season training at the end of this month ‘as a member of the first-team squad’.
Lee Burge is under contract for another season on Wearside and the pair look set to start the pre-season campaign as the senior goalkeeping options.
"Anthony has been progressing well,” Speakman said.
"We took the option on his contract last year with the intention of seeking to agree new terms and we are really happy to have this in place for the start of the season. He returns later this month as a member of the first-team squad and he has a great opportunity to progress with us.”
Patterson trained regulalry in the first-team group last season and made his debut in the Papa John’s Trophy at Oldham Athletic.
He thrived in the U23 side that made a superb run to the Premier League 2 Division 2 play-off final, and has been rewarded for that stellar form.
Sunderland are set to add former Manchester United youngster Jacob Carney to their U23 squad, which paves the way for Patterson to step up into the first-team group.
The Black Cats are likely to monitor the situation through the pre-season campaign, having considered recruiting further and securing a loan for Patterson.
Either way, the new deal is a sign of Sunderland’s long-term faith in the youngster and Patterson said he was ‘delighted’ with the development.
“I’m delighted to extend my contract with the club I’ve been at for many years now,” he said.
"I was pleased with the way last season went on a personal level and I can’t wait to get started again and see what the new season brings. Over the past year, I feel I’ve progressed well and it’s now important to build on that.”