Sunderland boss Jack Ross provides positive Duncan Watmore update ahead of Bristol Rovers clash

Duncan Watmore played 78 minutes against Walsall in the FA Cup on Tuesday night.
Duncan Watmore played 78 minutes against Walsall in the FA Cup on Tuesday night.

Sunderland manager Jack Ross has confirmed Duncan Watmore will be in the squad for this weekend's game against Bristol Rovers.

The 24-year-old striker played 78 minutes as the Black Cats crashed out of the FA Cup on Tuesday night, as he continues to recover from a serious knee injury.

Watmore spent over a year on the sidelines after suffering a cruciate knee ligament injury in the draw against Millwall in November 2017.

After featuring for Sunderland's under-23 side, Watmore made his long-awaited return to competitive football against Notts County in the Checkatrade Trophy earlier this month.

And Ross now believes the forward is ready to make an impact in League One.

"Duncan Watmore will be in the squad for Saturday," said Ross in his pre-match press conference.

"How I use him, we will have to see but he will be available in the squad this weekend."

Rovers are 21st in the table following four defeats in a row.

But Ross won't be taking the fixture lightly and is preparing for a difficult game at the Stadium of Light.

"Teams have always reacted to playing at the Stadium of Light this season and I’d imagine Saturday will be no different," added Ross.

"We have not had to bounce back very often, but I expect a reaction this weekend from my players."