Sunderland's Jordan Pickford is Sky Sports star Matt Le Tissier's young player of season

Jordan Pickford: Something to smile about. Picture by FRANK REID
Jordan Pickford: Something to smile about. Picture by FRANK REID
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Matt Le Tissier has named Sunderland's Jordan PIckford as his young player of the season so far.

Only Burnley's Tom Heaton has been busier than the Black Cats keeper who has been in stunning form, despite the Wearsiders being bottom of the Premier League with the second worst defensive stats.

"Jordan Pickford has made 36 saves in eight appearances," Le Tissier wrote in his column on Sky Sports.com.

"Alex Iwobi has done very well, Marcus Rashford is one you've got throw in the mix while Kelechi Iheanacho has a great goals-per-minute ratio again but hasn't played much.

"I'm going for Sunderland's Jordan Pickford though.

"I know he's in a shocking team but I think he will turn into a top-class goalkeeper."

The 22-year-old, from Washington, has taken over from the injured Vito Mannone and his form has been such that he was called into the England sqaud for the World Cup qualifier in Slovenia last month.

Le Tissier's 'award' for Pickford comes in the Gillette Soccer Saturday expert's review where he offered up his stars of the season, champions and bottom three.

While the Southampton legend has bigged up Pickford in one breath, he has written off Sunderland in his next.

His predicted bottom three is Sunderland, Hull and Middlesbrough

He wrote on Sky Sports.com: "I don't think you'll find anyone who will say Sunderland will escape at the moment. They've gone to the well too many times and I think it will be a step too far."

Le Tissier has named Bournemouth's Eddie Howe as the manager of the season so far. Howe's Cherries take on Sunderland in the Premier League this Saturday.