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Fan Letters: January is right around the corner, and the speculation is already starting...

We’re edging closer and closer to the January transfer window, with the clickbait sites gearing up to spew their endless speculation into the ether - and, unfortunately, Sunderland are sure to get caught up in the crossfire... Got something to say? Email us:

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Dear Roker Report,

I recently read an article regarding the players possibly to be made available in the next window to free up wages for incoming players, and was surprised to see Jensen Seelt included. If there is a need to free up wages then surely we need to look at those players who are expensive and unlikely to feature in our team this season.

I would suggest that Pritchard, Dack and Evans would be prime candidates. Pritchard has already been told there will be no new contract. Dack brought in to add experience hasn’t managed to forge a role in the team and struggles with injuries.

Evans has been out most of this year and hasn’t been missed so far this season. Add to those Elliot Embleton, who has sustained two bad injuries and must now be a doubt to ever get back into our team.

Those four should free up sufficient to enable the squad to be improved at a fraction of their current wages and to further reduce the age of the squad. It would be sad for Embleton but sentiment goes out the window with these decisions.

How do others think?

Bill Fisher

Ed’s Note [Gav]: Oh Bill, it sounds like you’ve been clickbaited! I’ve no idea which article you’re talking about but I can guess it was just some filler shite on a website that’s lacking in clicks because there’s no actual football to talk about. Seelt’s going nowhere - he’s needed.

But, the overall topic of players who could possibly leave is a very relevant one given that January is right around the corner. When everyone is fit (and when do we ever have that luxury?) we have a pretty large squad, and even now I think it’s safe to say that there’s absolutely no way that everyone can be satisfied with their playing time, because we all know that Tony Mowbray’s not really a tinkerman and doesn’t like to change his side much from game to game - meaning that those who have yet to earn his trust are suffering from a lack of time out on the pitch.

I can’t see there being much movement out of the door, that being said. I reckon we’ll probably sign a central midfielder which will necessitate the departure of Jay Matete, who won’t be short of offers and has been really unlucky at Sunderland due to injuries.

Other than him... well, Jewi has spoken out recently about his frustration with the lack of game time and that won’t change anytime soon so I think a loan is likely there. And the same goes for Ellis Taylor, who seems to be coasting at U21 level but is absolutely nowhere near the first team and is of an age where he needs to go and play football.

Alex Pritchard is a shout mainly because we have several players in his position, he’s not starting every week and his contract is up in the summer and is unlikely to be renewed. I can see him leaving, but I don’t think we’ll see any interest in Evans given how long he’s been crocked, and Dack’s only really just got here so he’s going nowhere.

I’m not sure how bad Embo’s injury is but I think we’ll struggle for takers - he’s barely been fit, so why would anyone take the risk? He is disposable though. We’ve moved past him.

I personally don’t think we need to change much with this team. If there’s a possibility of bringing back Amad on loan we’d be mad not to, and I think we do need a quality operator in the centre of the park to properly push Ekwah in particular. Other than that, I’m happy. For most of the players we signed in the summer we’ve yet to see what they can do, and their time is likely to come in the second half of the season. We haven’t seen Pembele yet, we’ve barely seen Mayenda, Aouchiche looks like he could make a real impact, and then there’s the injured lads - Evans, Cirkin and Alese, who will add depth when fit.

Huddersfield Town v Sunderland - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Why do I feel like Football League World are trying their best to unsettle and get into the heads of Jack Clarke and Sunderland fans, hoping he will want to leave every week they print a story about teams being interested in him?

I know he is playing his best football at the moment and is attracting interest but it makes me think they don't want Sunderland to have a chance to do well this season - I’m sure their writers can't stand us doing well.

I know money talks... but, Burnley?!

I think they seem certs to go down so I can't see the point of going there. I understand the lad would love to play in the Premier League and I hope that it could be with Sunderland - I don’t know what other Sunderland fans think, or is it just me thinking this?

Alan Armstrong

Ed’s Note [Gav]: Football League World is the very worst example of football fake news. That website exists purely to harvest clicks and, unfortunately, the way they do that is to spin rumours about players from popular clubs that have the most fans and, therefore, are most likely to click on their articles and generate revenue. I’ve often advised people to just block all of these websites because you’ll never learn anything informative from them - I’d suggest you do the same!

There’s going to be no getting away from speculation surrouding Clarke or any of our best players though, because we ultimately have our place in the food chain and those above us at any given time are going to try and take advantage.

In the case of Jack Clarke, I’m sure Burnley won’t be the only club in the Premier League keeping a close eye on him, and as he keeps proving, he’s probably good enough for the step up because he finds playing in the Championship easy. I’m with you though, a move there would make zero sense because they’re coming straight back down. But if you look around the rest of the league, there are plenty of teams where you could see him stepping into their squad and making a difference - if he’s going to go, it has to be for a lot of money so that we aren’t hurt by his departure.

I’ve resigned myself to the idea that players I like are going to leave the club from time to time - it is what it is. As long as the wheels keep turning, we’ll be fine.

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