Bryan Oviedo in contention for Sunderland as Jack Ross considers ringing changes
Sunderland defender Bryan Oviedo could be in line for a recall to the starting XI against Burton Albion after Jack Ross praised his cameo performance.
Oviedo returned to action on Saturday in the 2-1 win over Rochdale, coming on as a second-half substitute for Denver Hume.
And with Ross admitting he is looking to make changes for tomorrow night's home clash against Burton Albion, Oviedo could feature again after coming in from the cold at Spotland.
“Denver was booked in the first half and some young players are a wee bit up and down at times,” Ross said.
“We felt like we were getting quite a bit of joy in forward areas and the one thing we know Bryan gives us is composure and quality in that area. We felt we weren’t going to have to defend that much – that’s not disrespectful, that’s just the way the game was going – and Bryan was good when he came on the pitch.
“It’s obviously been difficult because he had a lot of niggling injuries and through the course of December/January he probably played for 25 per cent of the time, so you can’t really then put yourself in serious contention. In that time other people came in and I’m quite fair with players.
“But I’ve never really concerned myself with that because Bryan and I speak and he’s always known where he is, where he’s at.
“I knew if he got the opportunity he would be fine. He’s a good player.
“It’s not just testament to individual players but the culture within the group that there’s nobody will go the wrong way because they’re all pulling in the same direction.
“I was pleased for him on Saturday because he wants to play football.”
Oviedo hadn't featured since his deadline day move to West Bromwich Albion broke down, with a series of niggling injuries keeping him sidelined.
His cameo on Saturday, though, could put him in contention for a starting berth tomorrow as Ross looks to freshen his side up for their fourth game in nine days.
The Sunderland boss added: “It’s just about refocussing now. We’ll take stock of where we’re at squad-wise and team-wise because the team was by and large the one that played on Wednesday (at Accrington Stanley).
"Tuesday will be our fourth game in nine days, so we’ll look at it but they’re looking forward to getting back home as well because at the last two venues pitch-wise it’s been difficult at this time of year."