Kimpioka keen to stay with Cats, but needs chance to play

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Sunderland youngster Benji Kimpioka insists he is happy to remain at the club – provided he is given the chance to play.

The Swedish teenager enjoyed a breakthrough season at the Stadium of Light, as manager Jack Ross handed him several opportunities in the first-team.

And while discussions over a new deal continue – the forward has a year remaining on his current deal - Kimpioka claims he is happy to remain on Wearside, but has dropped a hint to Ross that he will be looking for further involvement next season.

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Speaking to the press in his homeland, Kimpioka said: "A good year. You are never satisfied, always want to have more as a football player, but I take this year as a lesson for myself. Hopefully more will happen in the future.

Sunderland striker Benji Kimpioka has discussed his Sunderland futureSunderland striker Benji Kimpioka has discussed his Sunderland future
Sunderland striker Benji Kimpioka has discussed his Sunderland future

"A good start. I am grateful for that.

"You get to see what happens. As it looks now, I remain in Sunderland, which I am happy about. As long as I play football I am happy.”

Meanwhile, Sunderland are yet to seal their first signing of the summer – and will face competition for one of their primary targets.

The Black Cats have long-been linked with a move for former Ayr Untied striker Lawrence Shankland, who is available as a free agent this summer, but Portsmouth are also reportedly set to enter the race for the forward.

Shankland, who netted 34 times last season, is also attracting interest from Rangers and Celtic.