This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Sunderland manager Phil Parkinson is looking to strengthen his squad in January, with a loan move for talented Manchester United youngster James Garner being lined up, according to a report in The Sun.
Garner is considered a real talent by his manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and though he will not be allowed to leave permanently, a loan move to gain valuable game-time may be considered.
So would Garner be a good signing for the Black Cats?
“Frankly it is hard to say whether this will work out or not.
“Garner is really highly rated by the Red Devils but at 18, he is yet to experience regular first-team football at any level, so it comes with its risks.
“I also don’t think it is a position that the Black Cats should be prioritising. In Grant Leadbitter, George Dobson, Max Power and Luke O’Nien they already have a host of good options in central midfield.
“I think the front line and wide areas should be prioritised by Parkinson before he even considers the midfield.”
“It would be a fantastic signing for Sunderland, as he’s one of the players that is tipped by many to go on and have a great career for Manchester United.
“He’s the type of player that would make all the difference in whether the Black Cats could be promoted or not, and even for half a season from January would benefit their squad massively.
“They need a spark, and too often this season it’s just a lot of very lacklustre performances that lead to close draws or narrow defeats and they have no one who can turn a game on its head. Garner could be that man, and be the one to change Sunderland’s fortunes.
“He was playing in the Europa League on Thursday night, but that’s all the first-team football he’s had so far this season, so it would be a beneficial move for both player and Sunderland.”
Would midfielder James Garner be a good loan signing for Sunderland?
“This could be a smart bit of business by Phil Parkinson’s side in January.
“They’re going to have a battle on their hands to beat the likes of Wigan and Preston to land his signature.
“Garner has been in fine form already this season, scoring five goals in five games for the Man United under 23’s side, so it’s clear to see that he’s a bright talent.
“He also made his senior debut for the Red Devils in the win in the Europa League, so he’ll be keen to further his development in senior football at the earliest of opportunities.
“Sunderland need depth in their squad if they’re going to be challenging for promotion once again, and I think Garner would be a solid addition for the Black Cats if they struck a deal with Man United to loan him in for the remainder of the season.”