'Hope so': Callum Styles explains Sunderland preference and is quizzed on future after Barnsley transfer

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Callum Styles discusses his preferred position and is asked about his Sunderland future following his loan transfer from Barnsley.

Callum Styles hopes he’ll receive an opportunity to start in midfield following Dan Neil’s injury setback - while he’s yet to have discussions about his Sunderland future.

The 24-year-old signed for the Black Cats on an initial loan deal from Barnsley in January, with an option for Sunderland to make the deal permanent this summer. Styles was still recovering from an operation to remove his appendix when he moved to Wearside, waiting until late February to make his first appearance for the club.

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“It’s been tough,” Styles explained when discussing his first few months at Sunderland. “When I first came there was a lot of injuries, a lot of players missing. There was just a lot of chop and change with a change of manager and players getting injured. It’s been a bit of a rough road but we have a lot of ability in the squad looking ahead to next season.”

Asked if he’s had any conversations about his future, Styles replied: “I’ve had no discussions. I’m just focusing on football and that’s for other people to discuss.”

While he predominantly played as a midfielder at Barnsley, Styles has been deployed as a left-back and left wing-back at Sunderland. The Hungarian international has moved into midfield when the Black Cats have changed shape against West Brom and Millwall, while Dan Neil’s season-ending injury may present another opportunity in the side’s engine room.

“I think I can deal with it very well,” said Styles when discussing his different roles. “I’ve done it a few times in my career. Different players can deal with different things and I can deal with that and all the tactical stuff.”

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Asked if he hopes for an opportunity in midfield following Neil’s injury, Styles replied: “I hope so. I think that’s the conversation that’s got to happen. We’ll soon see when Saturday comes.

“He’s a top player unfortunately he’s got an injury but we just have to keep going for the last two games. We have a lot of talent in the squad.”

Sunderland have two Championship fixtures remaining this season, with Mike Dodds’ side preparing for Saturday’s trip to Watford. The Black Cats will then host Sheffield Wednesday on the final day of the season.

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