Sam Allardyce blocks senior fringe players from going out on loan

Sam Allardyce with Robbie Stockdale
Sam Allardyce with Robbie Stockdale

Sunderland’s young guns could depart before today’s emergency loan deadline, but no more senior players will leave the Stadium of Light.

Football League clubs have until 5pm today to bring in their final reinforcements for the remainder of the campaign, yet Sam Allardyce is not expecting a flurry of departures from Sunderland.

The Black Cats have been willing to do business during the emergency loan window, with right-back Adam Matthews joining Bristol City until the end of the season, with a view to a permanent transfer next season.

But boss Allardyce has managed to shift much of Sunderland’s dead-wood over the last three months and flop centre-half Valentin Roberge - out-of-contract in the summer - is the only remaining player on the club’s books that is completely out of the first-team picture.

There are no further senior players that will be dispensed with today, albeit there could be members of the Under-21 squad who are allowed to depart on loan.

Allardyce told the Gazette: “No, I’m not expecting anyone to go before the deadline. Not any of the senior squad, anyway.

“Maybe at the younger end there might be one or two who could go out to get some first team experience.”

U21s midfielder Martin Smith joined Carlisle on a loan spell until the end of the season last week, and he is not the only academy product who has attracted interest from down the football pyramid.

Liam Agnew spent a second week on trial at League One Bradford last week and it remains a possibility that the 21-year-old could depart before the deadline, with his Sunderland contract expiring in the summer.

Left-back Tommy Robson and centre-half Tom Beadling - who have both been training with the first-team squad over recent weeks - have been the subject of enquiries from League One and Two clubs, yet those possible moves have not developed into anything concrete.

But Sunderland’s young hopefuls desperately need to grasp any possible opportunity to play first-team football before the end of the season, with this due to be the last emergency loan window due to a FIFA ruling.

From next year, Football League clubs will only be able to sign players on half or full season loans, which Allardyce expects to deter them from taking a chance on youngsters.

“This is the last time we are going to see the emergency window, which is going to be a massive problem for the game in this country,” he added.

“I hope they can find a solution to that going into next year.”