Phil Smith appeared on the latest edition of The Roar Podcast from The Sunderland Echo, where he spent some time talking about Sunderland’s January transfer plans and the journalist revealed that Black Cats fans can expect to see just “a handful of additions” this month, as opposed to a “drastic overhaul” of the squad.
This claim comes after it’s been reported that Black Cats boss Lee Johnson is lining up signings in several positions, with Forest Green Rovers midfielder Carl Winchester, St. Johnstone left-back Scott Tanser and Sheffield United striker Billy Sharp among those to have been linked with a move to The Stadium of Light this month.
Per Smith, Johnson is actually “quite relaxed” about the North East club’s January transfer business at present, with “just one or two” signings in the pipeline.
The journalist said: “Johnson’s been quite relaxed about it, really. He has said he doesn’t think he needs a major overhaul, it’s just one or two bits and bobs.
“I think the reality of the situation means that probably will be what we’re looking at, where it’s a handful of additions rather than any kind of drastic overhaul.”
Is one or two signings enough for Sunderland this month?
TIF Thoughts on what Smith revealed about Sunderland’s transfer plans…
Perhaps this news doesn’t come as a massive surprise given that the new League One salary and squad size caps were criticised by supporters of the North East club earlier this year and were expected to make life more difficult for them this month, while Johnson also suggested at the start of the month that the Sunderland takeover would make their transfer planning somewhat trickier, due to the fluid nature of the situation and the lack of clarity as to what they can and can’t do this month with the club’s ownership set to change hands.
So, it may be fair to say that the manager and the recruitment team’s hands are somewhat tied with regard to their transfer business this month and whatever business they do end up getting done will have to be well thought out in order to give the Black Cats a boost in their promotion bid, with the club currently sitting three points outside of the play-offs.