Jon Guy says...
I think Dack’s signing suggests that our two new young strikers will be our go-to up front, and that Dack is there to act as an older head alongside them. We also know through Josh Maja that if you’re good enough, you’re old enough.
I’d love to see Ross Stewart stay and lead the line, but it’s not looking good.
I think Mayenda looks like a raw talent and that he’ll need time to settle, but we have Jewison Bennette as well, and I think Mayenda’s arrival should be viewed as a positive signing.
They’re very solid additions, but I agree with Tony Mowbray that we need a few more players to be added to the squad. However, I think we’re now at the point where we’ll need to move players on before we get more through the door.
Joseph Tulip says...
The signing of Dack is reassuring in that it demonstrates we’re serious about blending youth with experience.
It also shows our ambition to push for promotion this season, with Dack declaring that both he and the club have a shared wish to be in the Premier League.
Given his bad luck with injuries, he’s been mooted as a slightly faded star, and it’s a similar situation to when we signed Alex Pritchard, who arrived looking for a chance to prove a point- and he’s certainly repaid our faith in him over the last two seasons.
In the absence of Amad this season, the onus looked to be on Pritchard to step up and make the number ten position his own once again.
Dack will add competition in that area of the pitch, but it’s likely that both he and Pritchard will face spells on the sidelines, so hopefully they’ll complement each other over the course of the season.
As for Mayenda, he falls in line with the type of young, hungry and highly-rated players we tend to go for these days.
I’m sure he’ll have quality in abundance, but time will tell as to how early he’ll make his mark. Let’s not forget that he’s only eighteen, but Tony Mowbray will have no qualms about giving him his chance if he feels the teenager is ready.
Malc Dugdale says...
This is an interesting pair of signings, and it really demonstrates the club’s thinking.
Dack isn’t the type of signing we’ve seen very often in recent times, but the team is in need of experience to counterbalance the passion we have for embracing youth, and this is especially the case with the likes of Corry Evans out for some time.
Dack is someone who Tony Mowbray knows how to get the most out of, and someone he sees as being able to help younger players develop.
He may struggle to get into the team, but if he gets in and stays fit he’ll offer options in attack, backup for injuries, and a mindset that could help the balance of the team.
Mayenda is at the other end of the scale.
He seems to be quite a hot prospect who made his first team bow at a very young age, but it’ll be a different challenge fitting into and performing at the level of a top six English Championship team.
He’ll be raw and hungry as well as fit and strong, but we’re no longer lacking those physical traits as much as we did late last season, so how soon he’ll make his first team debut is unclear in my view.
I’m not sure if he’ll drop into the age groups, as we already have the likes of Chris Rigg pushing for starts in the absence of additional help for Luis Semedo.
It may be that Dack is likely to make an impact quite soon, at least in terms of leadership and experience, but it may be some time before Mayenda gets his chance.
However, having made twenty appearances in France last season, he’ll likely be given a runout, especially if we make no further attacking signings in the coming month.
I’m very doubtful the club will leave itself short up front for next season (again) so I fully expect more attack-based signings, but these are two decent additions for different reasons, and it’ll be interesting to see how big an impact they can make.
Phil West says...
I think there’s an absolutely fascinating contrast between our two latest arrivals.
In Dack, we’ve brought in a player with vast experience, who knows Tony Mowbray well, won’t shirk responsibility, should be a strong and authoritative voice in the dressing room, and can hopefully make a telling contribution this season.
I think it’s a very solid addition; the kind of free agent signing that I’ve expected us to make all summer, and if he can replicate his peak Blackburn form at the Stadium of Light, we’ve got a heck of a player on our hands.
Mayenda, on the other hand, fits the profile of a player in which we've put a lot of faith in over the past eighteen months: young, talented, eager to improve, and who can hopefully provide some much-needed depth up front.
Naturally, patience will need to be shown with Mayenda as he settles into life at Sunderland, but the environment at the club is geared towards allowing young players to develop and thrive, so I’m confident that he’ll be a successful addition to our squad.
With six promising signings on board and doubtless more to follow between now and the end of the transfer window, it feels like we’re getting closer to having a squad that can mount a real challenge this season, and the much sought-after mixture of youth and experience really is embodied with Dack and Mayenda.