Sunderland's Under 21s praised but promising youngster ruled out for three months

Andy Welsh, right, has praised his young stars
Andy Welsh, right, has praised his young stars
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New Sunderland Under-21 boss Andy Welsh has praised the professionalism shown by his table-topping youngsters.

The club's youngsters came from behind to beat Leicester City 6-1 thanks to goals from Liam Agnew, Rees Greenwood, a brace from Lynden Gooch, Charias Mavrias and Mikael Mandron.

It was a welcome win for Welsh & Co after the young Black Cats had been beaten by Manchester United in their last Barclays U21 Premier League match.

The win over the Foxes leaves the U21s five points clear at the top of the Barclays U21 Premier League having played a game more than second-placed Spurs.

Welsh said: "After last week against Man United we played some really good football and missed some chances but it was a fantastic response from all the players.

“We gave them that goal but some of our play after that was top quality and we managed to be very clever around the box, plus our finishing was much better than last week.”

Former Manchester City academy manager Welsh was appointed as Sunderland’s U21 coach after predecessor Robbie Stockdale was promoted to first-team coach in Sam Allardyce’s backroom team.

And the levels of professionalism shown by his young side have impressed him.

Welsh added: "We showed some really good game management against Leciester. We went one down and then 4-1 up through some fantastic play.

“We then went out and won the second half 2-0, so they were very professional and the game management in the second half was first class.”

Meanwhile, academy prospect Josh Maja has been ruled out for up to three months after suffering a back injury.

The youngster has scored three goals in the Barclays U18 Premier League but is now set for a spell on the sidelines.

Coach Elliot Dickman said: "Josh will be a miss but that’s football.

“It happens and we’ve got to deal with it and move on from it, but hopefully he’ll come back better from his time on the sidelines.

“It shouldn’t hamper his development too much and what we tend to do is focus on other areas of the player's game when they’re injured.”