Sunderland have taken two young wingers on trial, and both are set to feature in todays behind-closed-doors Reserve Team game against Preston North End.
First up we have Roarie Deacon, once on the books of Arsenal, is a tall left-sided midfielder-come-striker and adept with either foot. Scouting reports have noted that Deacon plays in a similar position to Andrei Arshavin, despite looking the polar opposite of him, and also shares a trait with the Russian in that he can often do very little all game, then fire in a moment of brilliance.
Deacon's main strengths seem to be his skilfulness, pace and finishing. Three things we almost certainly lack at the moment.
Roarie also had a recent unsuccessful trial with Hull City.
Secondly we have Jason Banton. Now this fella must have something good about him, but also something bad. What do I mean? He's only 18, and has moved from Arsenal to Blackburn Rovers to Liverpool and now finds himself putting himself on trial at various clubs, most recently Chivas USA in the MLS, where he was unsuccessful. Banton also had a failed trial at Southend United whilst still a Liverpool player.
Banton was highly touted as a youngster, and Blackburn were lead to believe they'd signed 'The New David Bentley' if there ever was a need for a new one, in that the winger could be played in a more attacking central role.
Clearly it never worked out, but like I say there must be something about him.
There's nothing at all wrong with taking a punt on such youngsters and seeing what they are about, but what would be slightly odd is that they will be too old for youth team football next season, whilst also too inexperienced for the first team. Just names to pad out the squad? Who knows even how seriously we're looking, but be sure to keep your eyes out for them.