The emotion on Wearside at the moment is very much mixed regarding Sunderland’s transfer dealings in the latest summer window.
Many think we left it too late and made a few panic buys, whilst others think we were right to wait until the last minute so manager David Moyes could mould his squad.
On top of Paddy McNair, Donald Love, Adnan Januzaj, Papy Djilobodji, Steven Pienaar and Javi Manquillo, who arrived earlier in the transfer window, Sunderland made a further four signings that have caused much confusion among fans.
Let’s start with Victor Anichebe. In my opinion, Anichebe isn’t an awful signing, but he also doesn’t give you that buzz you get surrounding some players, such as the likes of Jermain Defoe.
It was imperative that we introduced a new striker to the squad as, until Anichebe’s arrival, our next back up striker to Defoe was the severally inexperienced 17-year-old Joel Asoro.
One bonus about this signing is that he is another player who enjoyed arguably his finest form under Moyes. He’s worked with him before, therefore settling into the squad shouldn’t be too much of a problem. The only worry I have is the striker’s lack of goals.
In 186 appearances over ten years for both Everton and West Bromwich Albion, Anichebe has only scored 24 goals. That’s not exactly a goalscoring record that will get the fans excited and it will need to change, especially if Defoe were to get injured.
Jason Denayer is somewhat an exciting signing, albeit on loan from Manchester City and being just 21, but his record is quite impressive for such a young player. The centre-back made 29 appearances while on loan at Celtic, scoring five goals on his way to picking up PFA Scotland Young Player of the Year, as well as helping Celtic win the Scottish Premiership and Scottish League Cup.
Last year he spent a season on loan at Galatasary, where he helped them pick up the Turkish Cup. The youngster even made Belgium’s 23-man squad at Euro 2016, where he made one appearance in the quarter-final against Wales.
All in all, it seems like Denayer is quite highly-rated and hopefully he can prove himself while on loan at Sunderland. However, he will have strong competition to keep his place at centre-back ahead of Djilobodji and Lamine Kone.
Having never heard of Didier Ndong, until Sunderland matched a club-record transfer fee to sign him, it is hard to make comment on whether he will be a good addition. However, if his fee matches his quality, then we really will have a strong midfield when fully fit.
The Gabonese midfielder will join Jan Kirchhoff, Lee Cattermole, Jack Rodwell and Yann M’Vila (in January), so hopefully Moyes manages to find the best combination of players.
The final signing, even though after the transfer window closed, was Boavista’s Mika. This was a well needed signing as we are short on the ground with goalkeepers. With Vito Mannone out for the foreseeable future, we were left with just Jordan Pickford.
I for one hope Pickford is number one until Mannone is fit, but Mika seems like a good back-up if anything were to happen to the young Englishman too.
I think our current team should comfortably stay in the Premier League, providing we can keep players fit. We’ve had a couple of narrow defeats and a draw in the first three games, and that was with less than half the squad fit so hopefully, once we are at full strength we can win a few games and get away from the bottom of the table.