Who is Zach Clough? The 'special' striker on Sunderland's radar as Phil Parkinson eyes loan deals

Sunderland are monitoring Nottingham Forest striker Zach Clough, but who is he?

Tuesday, 14th January 2020, 1:44 pm

Here’s everything you need to know about Phil Parkinson’s target:

Key information

Age: 24 years old

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Sunderland target Zach Clough
Sunderland target Zach Clough

Nationality: English

Position: Forward or Attacking Midfielder

Club: Nottingham Forest

What type of move are Sunderland keen on?

The Echo exclusively revealed that Clough could be reunited with Phil Parkinson after their time at Bolton Wanderers, with a loan deal until the end of the season.

He hasn’t played for Nottingham Forest since the end of January 2018 away to Hull City in the FA Cup, so it is clear why they want to get rid of him.

His contract however doesn’t expire until 2021 after he signed a four-and-a-half year deal when joining from Bolton Wanderers on transfer deadline day in January 2017, so he could move on the cheap in the summer.

What has been said about him?

Former Rochdale manager Keith Hill said after he signed Clough on loan for the second time in January 2019: “We put a lot of work into Zach, but unfortunately he was injured for a large percentage of his first spell at the Football Club.

“There could be a suggestion that it’s a gamble, but we feel as though it’s a gamble worth taking because we’ve seen the quality. We need to keep him fit and he needs to keep himself fit, because if we do, we know how special he can be.”

What experience does he have?

Clough came through the youth system at Bolton Wanderers and went on to make 77 appearances for their first team scoring 23 goals.

He earned a £2.5m transfer to Nottingham Forest in January 2017 but has had limited playing time making just 31 appearances.

He spent time on loan at Rochdale last season making 13 appearances but struggled to reach full fitness and he hasn’t played a competitive game since April 2019.

Where can he play?

Clough primarily operates as a second striker, but has also been used as an attacking midfielder during his career.

Should he make it to full fitness, he could add depth to a Sunderland front line requiring reinforcements.