In light of a “streamlined” team concept, Kristjaan Speakman decides to sign for Sunderland for………..

Before the January transfer deadline, Sunderland is not likely to add any free agents to its roster. Sporting director Kristjaan Speakman feels confident in the squad’s current balance and the club’s summer business.

Tony Mowbray explains why Sunderland are expecting a quiet transfer window  - Sports Illustrated Sunderland Nation

Speakman believes Tony Mowbray has the proper players at his disposal and the tools at his disposal to change things and give others a chance despite the fact that the Black Cats added 11 players during the transfer window and lost 11 more to other clubs.

Speakman said of the free transfer market, “We always examine the market but it’s not something we’re looking at in terms of thinking, can we obtain this one position – 100% not, definitely not. We are “really, really comfortable” with where we are now as a result of the deals we completed at the window’s closing.

Sunderland, according to Speakman, have a “streamlined” roster that provides for strength in depth without impeding first-team advancement for players who aren’t already on the team. Many of the players signed over the summer can play multiple positions, which helps make up for whatever weaknesses some players may feel they have.

Speakman described the freedom Mowbray will have available using the middle as an example.

Dan (Neil), Pierre (Ekwah), and Jobe (Bellingham) are the three that Speakman felt were present. “We have three, and then Jay Matete and Corry Evans will recover from their injuries. We considered a few other options, like Adil (Aouchiche), who can play as a No.

“We want a streamlined team because we want to attempt to make sure that guys have an opportunity to play. Naturally, we want to make sure that we have enough depth, but not so much that players can’t see a way onto the field, since that’s also bad for the culture of the squad.

“What inevitably happens is that when you have a squad structure, you could be seen as being a little short in some areas, but we feel we have cover and we’re at ease with the flexibility we have.

“Team compositions and positions in the game are changing… Last Saturday, we lined out as a 4-3-3, but when we lost control of the ball, we switched to a 3-4-3 and faced Southampton man for man.


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