Malc Dugdale says...
Like most, I’m very pleased about the deal for Patrick Roberts.
I would say though that his form in the last couple of months has started to make me wonder if he was on the way out, and hence he was winding back a bit.
Maybe now he has his deal he can get back to the form we know and love, with his trickery and amazingly quick feet providing assists and goals more at the level we know he can contribute them.
Whether this contract is really about Patrick staying till 2026 or is a spread-bet by the club, so that if people want him we will get more for him, is irrelevant just now.
The lad is clearly more settled with us than he has ever been earlier in his career, and with his longer term future sorted out I am very hopeful and pretty confident his performances will rebuild to the levels we have seen and come to accept.
It’s a win-win for the club and the player, which gives me even more reason to feel a certain diminutive Man Utd player could well head back to our place for the second half of the season.
If that wasn’t on, Paddy would have left for sure, don’t you think?
Jonathan Hawley says...
This deal just makes sense for everyone involved, I think.
Roberts has publicly stated his happiness at Sunderland and shown no signs of being unsettled after his potential Southampton exit in the summer, so you’d think he’d be delighted to be safely signed on at Wearside for the foreseeable.
Sunderland, meanwhile, tie down a valuable asset who was rapidly depreciating - not to mention keeping an extremely talented footballer in the side!
Focusing more on the football than the figures, it still makes plenty of sense to keep Paddy around a while longer.
His talent has been demonstrated amply over the past few seasons, but at 26, he’s now one of the senior members of this squad.
He likely has a strong voice in the changing room, and having a player of his experience - not forgetting his spells at Man City, Celtic and in France among others - can only benefit the young squad around him.
He may not have hit the heights just yet this season, but he’s shown plenty of commitment and desire when on the pitch, just without getting the numbers to back it up.
Given time and the trust to showcase his skills, I fully believe we’ll see the best of Roberts again before too long.
Dan Harrison says...
Personally, I’m a big fan of seeing Patrick stick around for longer.
Most fans will be quick to criticise Roberts’ lack of end product in a Sunderland shirt, but his unique player profile is something we’ve struggled to find at the club in recent years.
Roberts’ skill set as a direct dribbler is second to none and relieves pressure on so many other of Sunderland’s attacking outlets in doing so.
Hopefully, he can finally start to increase those contribution numbers and we’ll see the diminutive winger at his terrifying best.