Connor Wickham is not thinking about his Sunderland future right now, despite his contract about to tick over into its final year, and is just happy to be playing again.
The youngster was recalled from a loan spell at Leeds and given an increased role by Gus Poyet, culminating in a very good performance against Everton last weekend. There are no current on-going talks to extend his stay in the north east, though.
Wickham told the Sunderland Echo:
Contracts or stuff aren't on the agenda for me.
I just need to play to play football first and foremost and I haven't had that here.
The manager called me back with 10 games to go and finally I'm getting a chance.
The ball is in my court now.
Has Wickham done enough to earn a new contract at Sunderland? You'd have to say no.
However, looking at it from another angle, young players with a track-record at Championship level who can be developed into something more look to be the way forward for the club now. With money likely to be tight in the transfer market, now is surely the time to take a chance on him.
Over the summer, I'd love to see the club commit to Wickham by getting a new contract done and making him a key figure in the squad for next season. He has the talent. It sometimes looks very deep beneath the surface, but it's there somewhere. His attitude looks like it needs some work, but attitudes can change.
Whether or not he wants to stay or consider a new contract, of course, that's another matter entirely.