Four new lads? Home debutantes to play big part for Sunderland today; damning on what went before

Sunderland are set to hand home debuts to a string of new faces at the Stadium of

by Brandon_Rawlin Saturday, 03 February 2018 09:13 AM Comments

Sunderland are set to hand home debuts to a string of new faces at the Stadium of Light this afternoon as Chris Coleman rips up what went before and freshens up his squad. Bit embarrassing for those who haven't been good enough this season so far, surely?


Chris Coleman could hand up to four new signings their home debuts at the Stadium of Light this afternoon for the visit of 12th-placed Ipswich Town. 

Lee Camp, Ovie Ejaria, Kazenga LuaLua and Ashley Fletcher could make their first appearances in front of a Sunderland crowd as the Black Cats boss ushers in a desperate new plan and ditches chunks of the old. 

If Tuesday's latest embarrassing spectacle proved many of those who have been turning out regularly simply aren't good enough, launching a raft of new boys in a bid to get three points in something of home 'must-win' is a damning indictment of what's gone before. 

None more so than in goal where Lee Camp has been put through his paces in training this week to prepare himself for a first league start in over a year as he replaces the hapless Robbin Ruiter. Consistently costing his side a goal a game, the Dutchman sunk to depths he's entirely capable of plumbing by being at fault for two of Birmingham's strikes on Tuesday night. 

Coleman has no doubt seen enough and is prepared to hope Camp can shore up a rearguard which has shown signs of promise in recent weeks despite the odd thrashing. That said, the Black Cats boss may have issues at the back with Lamine Kone and Jake Clarke-Salter doubtful, and may even revert to a flat back-four hope the 'keeper on loan from Cardiff can make a difference to the wobblers in front of him. 

In midfield, few will mourn the passing of Didier Ndong to Watford and many will be watching Liverpool loanee Ovie Ejaria this afternoon in the hope he can prove an upgrade on the now departed record-signing. Who the 20-year-old is paired with in the middle will be interesting as Lee Cattermole marked a return to his usual self - after a first good game for months in the victory over Hull - by embarrassing himself at Birmingham. 

Youngster Ethan Robson also struggled alongside the dead legs of Catts at St Andrews but Mr Dependable, George Honeyman, is certain to be one of the first names on the teamsheet.  We may yet see a sparing use of Cattermole, with the Sunderland stalwart reserved for home fixtures in which there should - theoretically - be less pressure on the midfield.  

Up front, Coleman is almost certain to turn to deadline day signing Ashley Fletcher to lead the line but with Sunderland failing to score with regularity in recent weeks, the lad frantically whisked up the A19 will need support which may yet see Kazenga LuaLua linking up with him centrally or Josh Maja / Joel Asoro being handed a role up top. 

Aiden McGeady may yet sit out this latest one and watch the Black Cats newest generation attempt to fashion opportunities he's failed to deliver himself of late. The Republic of Ireland man has only managed one goal in the past three months and you have to go back to late September - and the last time we played Ipswich - to find the last time he managed an assist. 

It will be a risk - which may yet backfire horribly - but four new boys in the starting line-up may not be far wide of the mark as Chris Coleman decides something has to give.