This is when Sunderland need to make signings by in order for them to play against Hull City

Sunderland face a race against the clock to land new signings – if they want to play in Saturday’s League One clash against Hull City.
Sunderland host Hull City on Saturday evening.Sunderland host Hull City on Saturday evening.
Sunderland host Hull City on Saturday evening.

The Black Cats will be back at the Stadium of Light for the first time in almost a month as they face their promotion rivals in a rearranged fixture.

The game, which will be shown live on Sky Sports, is Sunderland's first on home soil since the 1-1 draw with AFC Wimbledon - where Lee Johnson was without eight senior players.

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And while he has welcomed those faces to his ranks already, Johnson is keen to strengthen his ranks even further before the window closes on February 1.

A number of players have been linked with the Black Cats this month - including Forest Green skipper Carl Winchester, who played under Johnson at Oldham Athletic, and Hibernian striker Kevin Nisbet.

But if the Black Cats want either player to be available for the league clash with Hull City, they will have to ensure that all the necessary paperwork is lodged with the EFL no later than Noon on Friday, January 8 – for this is the registration deadline for players to be eligible for Saturday’s games.

Should any potential signing not be registered in time, then they could play against Port Vale in the knockout stage of the EFL Trophy on Tuesday, January 12.

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When asked about his aims for the window, Johnson said: "To try and get better, that’s something we’re trying to do.

"Obviously we’re in a position with the ownership, as you will have seen in public, at the moment where it’s not total clarity what we can and can’t do.

"I think it’s about presenting the right option and we’re on it, I can assure everybody of that.

"We’ve got very healthy lists and information to go with those lists, and I’m very conscious when bringing any player in that the group sits well with it.

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"Sometimes it’ll be an unfashionable signing, sometimes it’ll be a fashionable signing – and I guess people just have to trust over a period of time that we make the right decision for the long-term future of the club in terms of getting better instantly and over a period of time.”