Stadium of Light

Next Game

S'land v Arsenal

Saturday, 25 October 2014, 15:00

Barclays Prem

St. Mary's Stadium

Last Game

So'ton 8 - 0 S'land

Saturday, 18 October 2014, 15:00

Barclays Prem

O'Neill eyes defensive deals

Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill admits he has made defensive reinforcements his top priority for this summer.

Last Updated: 03/03/13 at 13:04 Post Comment

Martin O'Neill: Planning to bolster Sunderland's defensive options

Martin O'Neill: Planning to bolster Sunderland's defensive options

The Black Cats could see their defensive options limited at the end of the season with two players out of contract and two loan signings due to their return to their parent clubs.

Centre-backs Titus Bramble and Matt Kilgallon see their contracts expire in the summer, while loan signings Danny Rose and Kader Mangane are set to return to Tottenham and Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal respectively.

O'Neill knows he must bolster his defensive options and he concedes the full-back spots are his biggest two areas of concern with Phil Bardsley the only recognised full-back on the books at the Stadium of Light.

"Phil is the only recognised full-back we have at the football club and it's something we have to look at in the summer," O'Neill told the Sunday Sun.

"Craig Gardner has dropped back from midfield to play there while Phil has been out - and has done very well - but he's not a specialist.

"Ideally, we need competition for places but we also need players playing in their proper positions, and the positions that they feel most comfortable in."

O'Neill added: "Since I've been here at the football club, we haven't had a specialist left-back.

"Kieran Richardson played there last season but he wouldn't really consider himself a left-back.

"Danny Rose has been here on loan and he has done really well when he has played, but still that is a position that we would have to look at in the summer."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

Y

ou are wrong Per, thats the right way the play. Its everyone elses' fault that it doesnt work.

delboy
Mertesacker urges style change

A

s it's panto season coming soon, let me be the first Oh yes you do

munchie
Rodgers: No defence coach

T

hat's it for me, that's ego talking and nothing more. Three seasons in and he still hasn't resolved the issues in defence. This won't end well, he doesn't have the skills needed to sort out the back four and isn't prepared to bring in those who do. This is the worst team I've seen since the late days of Houllier. Brendan...you're fired.

rodger's gusset
Rodgers: No defence coach

Footer 365

Arsenal injury concerns deepen as Laurent Koscielny ruled out indefinitely

Arsene Wenger has ruled out key Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny for another four weeks - at least.

Premier League: Per Mertesacker urges Arsenal style change

Per Mertesacker has called on Arsenal to try something other than 'one-twos through the middle'.

Rodgers: No defence coach needed at Liverpool

Brendan Rodgers insists that Liverpool do not need a defensive coach despite shipping 19 goals in all competitions this season.

Mail Box

Does David De Gea Need Competition?

It would certainly be a good idea to give Victor Valdes a contract, while we have more mails on Brendan Rodgers, Arsene Wenger, the rabona and mailbox gripes...

Dropping Jack And Pity For Poor Alexis...

We have lots more mails about Liverpool (is Brendan the naked emperor?) and Arsenal. One reader feels sorry for Alexis Sanchez while one wants Wilshere dropped...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property