Sunderland beat League One rivals Wigan Athletic 2-0 to confirm their place in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup last night and the performance of 23-year-old Nathan Broadhead has caused a stir.
The striker joined on loan from Everton in the summer with the Black Cats winning the race for him despite interest from the likes of Blackpool and Reading.
The chance for regular first team football is understood to have been what convinced him to join the North East club but last night saw him start for just the second time in 2021/22.
Broadhead certainly grabbed hold of his opportunity with both hands as he scored his first goal in a Sunderland shirt – driving at a Latics defender before cutting inside and stroking his effort into the far corner to put his side ahead.
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Luke O’Nien doubled the Black Cats’ lead in the second half and Wigan were never able to force themselves back into the game, meaning Lee Johnson’s side moved into the fourth round with relative ease.
Broadhead’s contributions will have shown Johnson that the 23-year-old is a useful alternative to the in-form Ross Stewart or as an option out wide.
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He seems to have won over plenty of Black Cats supporters, with many taking to Twitter to discuss his display…
Tonight has shown Broadhead is better than Gooch get him starting Saturday #SAFC
— Ethan O’Neil (@EthanOsafc) September 21, 2021
Another classy performance tonight from relatively our fringe players
Cirkin mint again, Broadhead ran the line superbly and Dajaku looks a good find
And best of all, I’m loving watching us play every week at the minute the way we shift it about the pitch #SAFC
— Lee Wickham (@LdoubleE_87) September 21, 2021
— Spencer Davison🔴⚪️ (@SAFCSpencer) September 21, 2021
I’m relying on SSN for tonight’s goals, and they’ve just shown our opener. Really neat finish from Nathan Broadhead. That’ll give him a massive boost! #SAFC 🔴⚪️
— Philip West (@Philip_RJ89) September 21, 2021
Hopefully helps his confidence
— 🏟 (@safc28) September 21, 2021
Broadhead giving LJ a headache for Saturday like #SAFC 🔴⚪️
— GILESY (@GILESY1973) September 21, 2021
He has to start over either McGeady or Gooch on Saturday and I would even think about playing Pritchard as well
— Gaz K (@gazk_mackem) September 21, 2021
I think before long LJ will have no choice but to play him if he continues to look as dangerous as he was tonight.
Might not be the worst thing for Geads to be honest, get his legs back if he has a break, keep him fresh so he can play all season at the same level.
— Matt (@matt723289) September 21, 2021