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 are expected to be very busy in the coming weeks and Everton’s Jarrad Branthwaite is believed to be on their radar.
The centre-back was involved in the Toffees first-team in the previous campaign but he is unlikely to get regular football under Frank Lampard next season, as the boss prepares to bolster his options at the back with James Tarkowski’s imminent arrival the first sign of that.
Therefore, it has been reported that Branthwaite will leave on loan and it’s claimed the Black Cats are firmly in the picture to sign the left-footer.
The 19-year-old had a short spell on loan at Blackburn in the past but he will hope to be a key player wherever he goes next season.
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But, would he be a good addition for Sunderland? Here our writers share their thoughts…
This would certainly be an interesting one for Sunderland.
Branthwaite is largely an unknown quantity at this level, having only played ten games for Blackburn on loan there in 2020/21.
He may well have improved since then, but he is not exactly the proven Championship quality that I’d be looking for if I were Sunderland.
Nevertheless, a loan deal brings with it little risk for the Black Cats, so as long as they are not relying on Branthwaite as their only addition in the area, this would not be the worst addition to make this summer.
Given the success that a youthful talent in Callum Doyle saw last season on loan at Sunderland, there is certainly scope that this could happen.
A player that performed well when called upon in the Championship at Blackburn Rovers, his continued education and growth means that he could return to the second tier and play a vital role.
A really promising defensive talent, Jarrad Branthwaite ticks a lot of boxes, possessing excellent progressive abilities, whilst also proving to be dominant is his aerial and ground duels.
Of course, Sunderland will be looking to add experience in order to climatise to Championship football once again, however, they will also be eager to strike deals with younger players who are progressing at an exciting rate.
This has all the makings to be successful.
This does look as though it has the potential to be a rather useful signing for Sunderland.
The Black Cats have seen a number of defenders move on already this summer, following the expiration of their contracts or loan deals at the Stadium of Light.
As a result, the club do look as though they need to bring some new central defensive options in this summer, and Branthwaite’s physical presence would certainly be useful for Alex Neil’s side.
Branthwaite was reasonably solid during his last spell on loan in the Championship with Blackburn, while the experience he has had in and around the first-team at Everton could also help him cope with the demands of the second-tier in the coming campaign.
With that in mind, you do get the feeling that this could be one that is worth pursuing for Sunderland.