As we noted yesterday on the site, it would appear that Manchester United defender Cameron Borthwick-Jackson could be moving to Wearside on a loan deal.
Sunderland are in the midst of a complete overhaul in terms of playing staff - many of whom simply don’t want to be at a club they helped relegate into League One - and it would seem Jack Ross has identified the young full-back to fill but one hole in a dilapidated defence.
We decided to ask Pete Schlenker from Leeds fanzine Through It All Together what Borthwick-Jackson could bring to the club after his relatively unsuccessful spell in Yorkshire with The Whites.
RR: So, Cameron Borthwick-Jackson... he didn’t have the best of times with Leeds. Why?
PS: He wasn’t very good. He came into the team in August and appeared in the League Cup, but was injured soon after, and then only got into a few League Cup matches. He did not appear for Leeds again until the dismal FA Cup loss to Newport County in January.
RR: He’s still young and has Premier League and Champions League experience with Manchester United. Do you think his Leeds spell was a blip?
PS: I’m not sure it was. He had a loan spell at Wolves the year before his loan spell with Leeds and he was recalled half-way through the season there as well.
He has some talent, but there were rumours of “attitude problems” which I don’t necessarily put too much stock into, as almost every time a loanee has a bad spell it’s chalked up to “attitude”.
RR: Do you reckon he’d cope in League One, or is he just not good enough?
PS: I think he’d be good enough for League One. He looked good against some League Two opponents in the League Cup early in the season. He should be good enough for League One level - at least he won’t be out of place there.
RR: What would you say his best attributes are?
PS: He has all the physical tools you’d like to see in a full-back. He’s got pace and looked decent going forward in the first League Cup game, and was decent when he played against Preston early on.
RR: And his main weaknesses - what are those?
PS: As for weaknesses, he looked terrible and disinterested in the FA Cup match against Newport, his last for the club.
He made a number of mistakes and seemingly couldn’t do a thing right. He wasn’t very good in his other appearances after his first few matches either.
RR: Overall... if you were a Sunderland fan, would you be happy or anxious about this particular loan deal?
PS: I’d be anxious, but hopeful. Hopefully, two poor loan spells and a lack of playing time for the senior team at Manchester United would help him find some humility.
He has to know this might be his last chance to make an impression and work his way back into the long-term plans at Manchester United. If he’s going to make it as a footballer, League One and Sunderland might be it.