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Roker Roundtable: Should a third goalkeeper be on Sunderland’s summer shopping list?

After Jacob Carney’s departure, we’ve been left with Anthony Patterson and Alex Bass as our options. Is it an area in which we need to strengthen ahead of next season?

Photo by Barrington Coombs/PA Images via Getty Images

Andrew Smithson says…

I don’t think anybody could say that Anthony Patterson doesn’t deserve to be our number one at the moment, and it appears as if he works well with Alex Bass in training, so I wouldn’t want to risk that unless there was a good reason.

The concern with that, however, is we don’t know what to expect from Bass if Patterson is ever unavailable.

He doesn’t have any Championship experience and it’s hard to make a fair judgement on whether he can reach the levels required solely from what we saw in his two cup appearances last season.

The scouts and coaches will have a better idea of his temperament and potential, but I’d still like him to get a decent chance in pre season in order to give the fans a better picture.

His signing seemed to come out of the blue last year and I assumed the club would’ve wanted a wise old head in there as well to help out.

That could still happen, particularly now that a spot has been freed up by Jacob Carney’s release but then again, Adam Richardson was given a new deal a couple of weeks ago so maybe he’s being primed to step up more regularly instead.

We’ll soon learn what the club have in mind, but as long as it’s been properly considered, I’m happy to go with their judgement for the time being.

It’s been nice not having to worry too much about the goalkeeping department for a while, and if budgets are in play, I’d argue that other areas should be a more immediate priority.

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Malc Dugdale…

I’m not worried about a more experienced goalkeeper coming in for next season, as Patterson has proved that he’s good enough for this level, and with interest.

Yes, there are areas in which can improve, such as command of his box, and at times his distribution isn’t perfect, but the learning curve he’s on has already alerted England, and that shouldn’t be ignored.

His shot stopping is often way beyond his years and he saved and earned us many points during 2022/2023.

If we choose to get an experienced backup for Patterson, I’d be OK with that as I’m not sure that our second and third options can meet the level he does, but I’m also happy to back our local lad for another season and a push to the Premier League.

Let’s look into the options to replace or resign Amad, to add to our defensive options and build our attack beside Ross Stewart. Patto is a keeper in more ways than one, so let’s back the lad 100%.

Phil West says...

This is an interesting one.

Patterson’s development, particularly during the latter half of 2022/2023, was immense.

He finished the season as one of our most valuable players and also on the radar of the England national team, which is to his credit, along with Alessandro Barcherini, who’s played a major role in his progression.

As the season unfolded, his command of his area improved immeasurably, his composure was plain to see, and he grew into the role of a Championship stopper impressively. He’ll definitely head into next season as our undisputed number one, but I still believe that a slightly more experienced and solid backup would be a shrewd purchase.

There’s a bit of a drop off in quality between Patterson and Bass, and I’d have concerns about whether he could step into the breach if Patto suffered an injury. Next season is certain to be a real physical and mental challenge, and being able to rotate between the sticks without a drop in quality will be key.

The big question, however, is ‘who and where is this mystery goalkeeper, if one exists?’. Leicester’s Daniel Iversen, previously linked with a move to Wearside, hasn’t exactly covered himself in glory recently, and the likes of John Ruddy wouldn’t appear to be on the list, either.

Perhaps the club will opt to show faith in our current duo, which in theory would be fine, but if they can identify someone who can add both quality and depth to a key position, it’s definitely worth exploring.

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