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Roker Roundup: Kyle Lafferty and Sunderland ‘a match made in heaven’? & More Gary Madine craic

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An ex-teammate of Kyle Lafferty believes the striker and Sunderland could be a ‘match made in heaven’, whilst there’s a bit more craic with heavily-linked free agent Gary Madine - he’s the talk of League One.

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A match made in heaven?

Sunderland completed the signing of Northern Ireland international striker Kyle Lafferty last night.

The 32-year-old signed a deal that will keep him at the Stadium of Light until the end of the season and joins the club after leaving Norwegian outfit Sarpsborg 08 on a free transfer.

Sunderland have needed more firepower up front, leading to Phil Parkinson bringing in 6’4” forward and former Northern Ireland international defender Stephen Craigan is hoping that the striker can get back to goal-scoring ways after a difficult couple of seasons, but believes Lafferty and Sunderland could be a match made in heaven:

Kyle Lafferty is back in the spotlight and his expected move to Sunderland could be just the trick for him as a player for club and country.

Kyle had a very productive goalscoring season at Hearts in 2017/18 with 19 goals but since then things have stalled a bit for the big man.

From a selfish perspective as a Northern Ireland fan and with a huge play-off game in March, I just want Kyle to get back to playing and scoring goals. We need as many players as possible firing come the Bosnia game and that includes Kyle.

There had been a lot of talk of Kyle returning to Tynecastle but this move to the Stadium of Light could well be a platform to showcase his finishing power once again.

A fully fit and confident Kyle Lafferty would be an asset to a lot of clubs and the Black Cats are crying out for a goal scorer. Sunderland are trying to reinvent themselves as a club and to a certain degree that’s what Kyle is looking do as a player.

Kyle has been around a few clubs over the past few years and it would be good to see him put down some roots and if he scores goals then he’ll be a big hero for Sunderland who are fighting hard to make the play-offs to secure a return to the Championship.

It could be a match made in heaven for Kyle, Sunderland and Northern Ireland.

Holland v Northern Ireland -EURO Qualifier Photo by Laurens Lindhout/Soccrates/Getty Images

Robins expecting Madine in League One

Despite Lafferty’s arrival, Sunderland have still been linked with other strikers, with the likes of Liam Boyce, Billy Sharp and Gary Madine all being mentioned as possible targets.

Without naming the club involved, Coventry boss Mark Robins mentioned that he does believe Madine will drop into League One in the very near future after being released by Cardiff.

Coventry are unable to do business themselves due to financial constraints but Robins says his club just have to keep doing what they have been doing, regardless of which players are brought in by other clubs:

You see Gary Madine has been made available from Cardiff and those types of players are going to come into our league, I would think and they will improve teams because at the level they are very, very good and been very good in the Championship as well, so there are those types of players who will become available and others will snap them up.

You can see that but, ultimately, we do it the way we do it and have got to keep trying to improve it and we’re proud of what we’re doing at the moment and we have to keep that up.

Cardiff City v Stoke City - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Another reunion for Lens and Advocaat?

Former Sunderland manager Dick Advocaat is currently manager of Eredivisie side Feyenoord and as he looks to strengthen his team in the current transfer window, he has been linked with a move for a familiar face.

According to Voetbal International, Advocaat is interested in signing Jeremain Lens from Turkish club Besiktas.

Advocaat has already signed the winger three times previously, during spells at Zenit, Sunderland and Fenerbahce and could make it four.

Sunderland Training Session Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images