Sunderland forward Aiden O’Brien was in action again for the Black Cats last night and after a solid showing from the attacker, boss Lee Johnson expressed his happiness at him not leaving the club back in summer, telling the Northern Echo that he was ‘very happy’ a transfer didn’t happen.
The Black Cats have been superb so far this year and have surged towards the top of the League One table early on in this campaign. After another emphatic 4-0 win over Crewe on Tuesday night, it put the side within touching distance of first-place and straight back into the automatic promotion spots.
Although Ross Stewart is grabbing a lot of the headlines and the goals for Sunderland, Aiden O’Brien has also been a regular starter in the side and has put in some solid shifts for the Black Cats so far.
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With seven appearances and a goal to his name so far this year, the 28-year-old has become a first-team regular despite the fact that he could have left the Stadium of Light during the last transfer window.
Having only joined the side from Millwall back in 2020, the player looked like he might be out the exit door of the third tier side on a short-term basis. No deal ended up happening for the attacker though and now, his boss has told the Northern Echo that he is happy to still have the striker at the club. He said: “If you ask Briz [Aiden O’Brien], the communication was there right from the start,” said Johnson. “I just said to him that at that moment, I had a lot of new signings and I needed to know what I’ve got.
“You are trusted and I’d love you to stay, but if you want to play every single minute every week, then it might be better to go and get games. But I was very happy when the loan move didn’t go through because it meant that he was like an extra signing, if you like.”
O’Brien has instead begun to thrive with Sunderland and his boss has certainly noticed the work that the forward is doing in games for the Black Cats. With the club desperate to reach the heights of the Championship again, he could be important for them going forward, as they will need all the firepower they can get to compete at the very top of the third tier.
Aiden O’Brien is a solid player for Sunderland to have in their ranks. Albeit not as clinical as Ross Stewart, the forward still has plenty to offer the Black Cats and could become a regular in the side if his performances are anything to go off.
He’s helped Lee Johnson’s side to several key wins so far this year and if he can start banging in the goals himself, then it would make him undroppable. Right now, if he can keep doing what he is doing and helping the club to wins on a regular basis, then it will definitely prove that he was worth keeping at the Stadium of Light.