Sunderland manager Phil Parkinson has revealed that the unscheduled break in the football season that is currently ongoing, is helping some of the club’s playing squad to get back to full fitness.
On-loan Bristol City defender Bailey Wright and striker Charlie Wyke have both struggled with their fitness in recent weeks, although it seems the sudden halt in the action earlier this month is now starting to work to the duo’s advantage as they look to make a recovery ahead of the season run-in.
Wright hasn’t for the Black Cats since suffering a serious ankle injury back in February, while Wyke has found himself struggling with a back problem in recent weeks.
Providing an update on the progress being made by the pair in their recovery, Parkinson told the Sunderland Echo: “Pete Brand is working with the injured players – Bailey Wright has been doing work individually and is progressing well.
“Charlie Wyke has been able to do work for his back problem, he had another injection in that.”
Discussing the work his side are having to do to keep themselves fit in the current circumstances, Parkinson continued: “We just have to make sure that all the lads are doing the right work, and they are all good professionals who will keep themselves in the best shape possible.
“Following the new Government guidelines, they are still able to go out to exercise once per day so they can go for a run or a bike ride or whatever.
“We just have to make sure that when we are able to come back, we have done as much as we possibly can in the circumstances.”
Since his move from Ashton Gate in the January transfer window, Wright had made a total of five appearances for the Black Cats prior to his injury.
Wyke meanwhile, has scored five goals in 27 league appearances for the League One promotion-chasers so far this season.
This does seem to be one of the inadvertent benefits of the football’s current postponements for clubs across the country.
With no games being played for the foreseeable future, it does at least look as though teams will be much closer to full strength when the action resumes, given the opportunity to get fit the delay is giving plenty of those injured players.
Given the impact that Wright in particular had made for Sunderland following that January loan move, that is something that ought to be a big boost for their defence ahead of the season’s resumption.
For Wyke as well, this will be important period, as he looks to get himself ready for that key end to Sunderland’s season, where if he can be the man to step up in front of goal in the battle for promotion, he may yet be able to prove some of his doubters wrong at the Stadium of Light.