With the takeover imminent, Sunderland fans will no doubt be hoping to see the club do some exciting business in the January transfer window.
From Friday, Lee Johnson will have the chance to make transfers for the first time since taking charge of the North East club and Everton’s Ellis Simms should be top of his list of targets.
The forward line is a problem area for the Black Cats and one that Johnson will no doubt be keen to improve, while Simms is a hugely exciting young player and would offer the Sunderland coach something different from what he currently has at his disposal.
Not only has the 19-year-old proven himself a lethal and prolific finisher for Everton’s U23s, finding the net eight times in 11 appearances this term, but he has something that Will Grigg, Danny Graham, and Charlie Wyke all lack – pace.
Simms has been turning heads with his performances for the Toffees age-group sides for some time now and reports back in September indicated that the Premier League club would assess whether to send him out on loan or not after Christmas.
With the January window just a few days away, Everton will likely be weighing up that decision right now and a move to a Sunderland side that will be looking to make a promotion surge in League One could make a lot of sense.
On top of that, the presence of Johnson could help the Black Cats to get a deal done as the 39-year-old coach has a good record when it comes to coaching young strikers.
Not only did he convert Bobby Reid from a midfielder into a 20-plus goal striker but it was under his stewardship that Tammy Abraham first showed his quality in senior football – scoring 26 goals while on loan at Bristol City in 2016/17.
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Everton would surely love Simms to announce himself in similar style, which should play into the North East club’s hands.
It looks set to be a busy January window for Sunderland but signing the teenager on loan could prove to be their best bit of business, if they can get it done.
There’s no doubt that Johnson needs to sign a new striker when the window opens and the teenager has all of the characteristics he should be looking for.
The 39-year-old’s shrewd transfer dealings have been highlighted in the past, signing Simms would be the perfect way to prove it to Sunderland fans.