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Fan Letters: “Could Luke O’Nien move into Sunderland’s midfield to make way for a new defender?”

RR reader Bill would like to see Luke O’Nien moved into midfield - something he feels more confident about having watched Jenson Seelt & Nectar Triantis at the back last week. Got something to say? Email us:

Photo by Michael Driver/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

You may recall my previous email about my desire to see Dan Neil in a more advanced attacking situation. To do so would necessitate Luke O’Nien moving from central defence into the midfield holding position.

My concern then was to who would partner Dan Ballard in centre defence. That question was partially answered against Birmingham when both Triantis and Seelt performed admirably together.

It may not happen straight away, but Mowbray now has alternatives in his defence which is great for the club. Well done also to both full backs who were tremendous, and also Rusyn who was unfortunate not to score and showed enough to suggest that he is starting to fit in.

Bill Fisher

Ed’s Note [Gav]: Never say never of course, but I don’t think Mowbray is about to move O’Nien into midfield anytime soon. I think O’Nien is actually a capable midfielder but he isn’t the same type of player that Neil is - he’d be more of a break it up and mash it type of player in there.

I dunno if you’ve missed it but since Ekwah returned from injury it’s been him playing as the holder in the middle, with Neil much further forward. And I think it’s working, bar Ekwah’s rather hairy performance last time out.

I’m happy with the makeup of the team at the minute and I’m in no hurry to see Neil or O’Nien move - I like them both where they are at the moment.

Sunderland v Norwich City - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Michael Driver/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Just a word on Niall Huggins, who has gone to hell and back with injuries and is now coming out on the other side. I had written him off but he has shown his qualities. Well done Niall and well done on your award for goal of the month, as well as the call up for Wales.

Ian Hughes

Ed’s Note [Gav]: This is suspicious Ian... with a name like Hughes there’s a strong possibility you could be Welsh. But I agree, and I even wrote about this on the site today - Huggins has really shown his worth recently and was the best player on the pitch against Birmingham. I’m just delighted it’s working out well for him, because there was a moment where I seriously wondered if his career might have been over. It’s not often a player can miss almost two years of football and come back to compete - when his issues started we were in League One, and now we’re a promotion challenger in the league above. So like I say, big credit goes to him for turning things around.

Sunderland v Norwich City - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Michael Driver/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Re: the discussion in the last Fan Letters about Patrick Roberts, I can see it from both sides. Tremendous player on his day but how often is his day? I think you always notice him on the pitch which is great, but I want to see more from him. Still though if Patrick is playing I am happy, as I can appreciate a good player. I hope the boo boys don’t start looking for a scapegoat when results don’t go our way and start questioning him, because he is class.

John Topping


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