Sunderland have today confirmed the signing of Jonny Williams on a one year loan deal. The midfielder - who is aged just 23 - is currently on international duty with Wales, so will join up with his new teammates prior to our home game with Sheffield United on September 9th.
Williams, who turns 24 in October, recently signed a contract extension with Palace until 2019.
The youngster played his first professional games at Palace in the 2011-12 season - his debut came as a second half substitute against Coventry City - and was surrounded by plenty of hype as a youngster finding his feet in the game.
Since then, Williams has never really been able to cement his place in the Palace team, and once they were promoted to the Premier League in 2013 he found opportunities limited. He has had umpteen loan spells in the last three years - with Sunderland being his fourth temporary home - and the Palace academy product will be hoping that he can finally get his once promising career back on track following a spell in the North East.
Loans at Ipswich, Nottingham Forest and MK Dons have proved to be less than fruitful for the 23-year old as much of his young career has been interlaced with nagging injuries, but hopefully Williams can finally get a solid run in a team - something that he has never quite managed elsewhere.
The Welshman’s international exploits has seen him pick up 17 full caps, and he has also represented his country at under 17, under 19 and under 21 level.
Presumably his signing fills the gap left by the outgoing Wahbi Khazri, and Williams should offer far more hunger to our side than the Tunisian, who has failed to impress since the current season began.
The only concern for me is that Williams has a questionable goalscoring record for an attacking midfielder. In his 113 games he has managed just 3 goals - a poor return for a player who operates the majority of his time in the attacking third of the pitch.