Who is Jordan Willis? The ex-Coventry defender set to sign for Sunderland
Sunderland are set to announce the signing of former Coventry City defender Jordan Willis – but who is he?
Jack Ross has made strengthening his backline a priority this summer, and Willis is set to become the club’s second defensive addition of the summer – while taking the total number of incomings to three.
And having been in high-demand this summer, the transfer represents something of a coup for the Black Cats.
But what do we know about Willis? Here’s an in-depth look at Sunderland’s latest addition:
Previous club: Coventry City
What has his career been like before Sunderland?
Similarly to former Coventry teammate Lee Burge, who Willis is set to reunite with on Wearside, the defender has spent his entire senior career with the Sky Blues.
Having burst onto the scene in the 2013/14 campaign, Willis cemented his place in the side towards the end of that campaign and has been a first-team regular ever since.
He’s now racked-up over 200 senior appearances – most of which have come in League One – while also being handed the captain’s armband at the Ricoh Arena.
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Willis has also represented England at youth level, emphasising his pedigree in the game.
What type of player is he?
The epitome of the modern-day defender, Willis is athletic and keen to drive forward with the ball at his feet.
But that doesn’t mean he shirks his defensive responsibilities, with Willis strong in the air and tough in the tackle.
He’s versatile, too, and can play at either full-back or in a more central role.
Why have Sunderland signed him?
Sunderland’s defensive flaws were all too evident last season – and Ross made improving his backline a priority.
Willis was quickly identified as a top target thanks to his League One experience, evident ability and versatility.
Indeed, Ross believes he possesses all the key attributes required to play in his desired system and style.
Who else was interested?
A host of Championship sides – including Derby County, Bristol City, Hull and Sheffield Wednesday – were reportedly tracking Willis before Sunderland clinched the deal.