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Roker Roundtable: How confident are you that Sunderland will adequately strengthen their squad?

We’re now over two weeks into the transfer window, with one addition made to Sunderland’s squad so far. Are you concerned or patient about how things are progressing this month? Our panel have their say...

Sunderland AFC

Craig Davies says...

I normally hate January transfer windows. The best quality is rarely available, and most signings are forged from a panicky sense of desperation rather than qualified and measured inspiration.

I’m not expecting any money to be spent, but that may not entirely be a bad thing.

We spent a ludicrous amount (for League One standards) on Will Grigg last January and from a financial and playing point of view that has been a disastrous deal thus far. I’m actually satisfied with Kyle Lafferty. I’m not usually in favour of signing over 30’s journeymen with questionable reputations, but considering our fractious financial situation and the scrambling anxiety of selling the club as quickly as possible, I’m realistic and practical about new signings.

With Parkinson’s experience at this level of football and of basket-case, self imploding clubs, I have a renewed confidence that he’ll be able to spot a bargain and identify potential additions that may actually be helpful. And if Phil gets his Christmas wish and a Championship club who enjoy taking risks on brilliant if not frustrating players, come in and take the over the wages of Aiden McGeady, then perhaps we can reinvest his salary into competitive and hungry players who are capable of adding positively to our battle for promotion.

This month won’t be record-breaking or life-changing but I believe at least 3-4 decent loan signings will come in and add something constructive.

Parkinson has taken dogs abuse in recent months, and he will be determined to show he’s the promotion winning manager Donald believed he was when he employed him. Not the failed, dim-witted water carrier, that many were accusing him of being.

So if anyone will be determined to make the most of the January window, it will be Parkinson and recent results and performances may make us more attractive to incoming players. Am I excited? No. We’re in League One and even the best players are average. But I’m bizarrely confident we’ll still be heading in the right direction come February the 1st.

Northern Ireland v Estonia - UEFA EURO2020 Qualifier - Group C Photo By David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile via Getty Images

Sam Blakey says...

The January window is never particularly straight forward (the same can be said about Sunderland AFC) - tempting good players away from clubs that are doing well means either over paying or, at the very least, it seems waiting until closer to the deadline.

It may be due to the fact that Parkinson and the players appear to have turned things around recently as to why there isn’t more discontent around our lack of business in the window. However, our recent form does not take away the fact that we desperately need to improve our current squad.

I’m not particularly starting to worry yet, however it does concern me due to our recent transfer windows, with players such as De Bock coming in at the last minute becoming clear that we had run out of options and just needed someone in for cover - hopefully the same does not occur this time round.

My main concern is that the message from the club was seemingly ‘wait until January’, which is fine if we do strengthen in the window, however you’d have thought that by now we’d have more people through the door.

Before the window one of the main positions, if not the main position it seemed that fans agreed with needed to strengthen in was a centre forward, a goal scorer. With the signing of Kyle Lafferty being in my opinion a good one, I still think we need another forward in before deadline day. The problem with that is we now have four strikers, and therefore it would seem that we would have to shift one or even two out before getting another in. I think that we have just come to accept that Will Grigg hasn’t worked or been what we were hoping, so it would seem that he’d be the one to go - I just hope we’re smart with how we offload him as this could be crucial to getting some more signings in.

Hopefully come February we have made improvements to the squad in order for us to kick on and keep up our current form in order to achieve promotion. Ha’way the lads!

Oxford United v Sunderland AFC - Carabao Cup Round of 16 Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images

Chris Wynn says...

It’s times like these that I feel I know very little about the inner workings of football. As far as my untrained eye is concerned Phil Parkinson has now had ~12 weeks to assess the squad.

We now find ourselves in the middle of the window having only confirmed the signing of another striker to push/support Wyke.

I can’t understand why at least one signing isn’t lined up to hit the ground running in January. Surely during the run we had it was identified what we were short off - pace, power, strength perhaps?

We’ve managed to claw ourselves back to the same position as we were back in October when Parkinson was appointed and due to the fact everyone is tripping over themselves to stay in League One, every 3 points is vital.

The recent good form has masked certain issues and gives an element of reassurance about our squad. Now we’ve improved our form this is the time to improve the squad whilst the going is good.

We have two weeks left and our business in what’s left of the window will define what division we’ll be participating in next season.

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