Luke O'Nien opens up on a good week for Sunderland, his best position and 'brilliant' coaching staff

Behind the scenes Sunderland staff have long talked up Luke O’Nien’s finishing ability.

Thursday, 3rd October 2019, 7:00 am

They first made reference to it after his first goal in Sunderland colours, a thumping finish away at Shrewsbury Town.

So his deft chip against MK Dons should perhaps come as no surprise.

An excellent effort, it was the icing on the cake for the 24-year-old, who has blossomed since moving back upfield in recent weeks.

Sign up to our Sunderland AFC newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Luke O'Nien celebrates his goal against MK Dons

He has brought energy, quality and aerial prowess.

The debate over his best position will continue, a player whose performances at right-back attracted Championship interest.

O’Nien sees the benefits of having that versatility and credits Sunderland’s backroom staff for his rise over the past twelve months.

“I’m very much enjoying playing further forward,” he said.

“I've got great people around me and the staff are helping me develop in a number of positions.

“I'm happy to play anywhere but I'm enjoying playing attacking midfield.

“It was about time I scored, I was getting some stick from some of the staff because I've been finishing well in training and I've finally been able to do it on the pitch.

“The staff have been brilliant with me,” he added.

“They've helped me develop since the day I got here.

“Playing different positions, you've got to adjust your thinking but when I've got the quality players around me like I have, it makes things a lot easier.

“I'm happy to play anywhere and I'm enjoying it.

“And whether I'm playing right back or further up, I expect the gaffer to judge me as an out and out player in that position.

“I'm very much enjoying it and hopefully it can continue.”

Sunderland travel to Lincoln City on Saturday looking to build more momentum, with O’Nien delighted with the response to the difficult draw at Bolton Wanderers.

“It's been a great week,” he said.

“Two wins, one against a Premier League team.

“We've come across two very different teams, so you have to approach them differently with different tactics.

“I think we executed the gameplans well back to front, credit to the gaffer, he's got everything right.

“Training was great and then we went out and performed.

“We're in a good spot.”