FORGOTTEN man Cabral WILL be given a second chance at Sunderland, insists Gus Poyet.
Summer signing Cabral has not featured for the Black Cats since August’s Capital One Cup victory over MK Dons, with his only league appearance in red and white coming on the opening day against Fulham.
The Bosman arrival looked bright during pre-season and enjoyed a promising debut against the Cottagers, yet then found himself out of favour under Paolo Di Canio due to concerns over his work-rate.
Cabral has been unable to force his way back into the first-team picture since and has been limited to outings for the Under-21s.
But Poyet says he has not shut the door on the 25-year-old, who was an unused substitute for last month’s clashes against Southampton, Manchester City and Stoke, while fellow midfielder Lee Cattermole was suspended.
And with Sunderland facing a hectic schedule of games over the next month, Poyet believes Cabral will be given another opportunity in the first-team.
“He’s been close a couple of times, but for different reasons, he didn’t play,” said head coach Poyet.
“He was on the bench in the games that Ki (Sung-Yeung) played at his best, so it wasn’t easy to play him, and then Lee was back.
“Sooner or later, he will have an opportunity.
“And then when you need him, he needs to show me in a game what he can do.
“At the moment, he’s only training which is not the same.
“But I’m sure he will have a chance and then it’s up to him.”
Cabral turned down the opportunity to remain with Swiss champions FC Basel and play in the Champions League, to join Sunderland on a three-year deal during the summer.
He was expected to be a key figure for the Black Cats, but has failed to hold down a starting spot under Paolo Di Canio, Kevin Ball and now Poyet.
Championship side Blackpool were interested in taking the former Swiss Under-21 international on loan in October, before opting instead for Newcastle’s Dan Gosling.