Lee Johnson reveals latest on Sunderland goalkeeper situation

Anthony Patterson is yet to return to Notts County on loan after Lee Johnson confirmed Lee Burge is undergoing precautionary heart tests after a setback in his Covid recovery.

Burge has been missing recently through Covid and Johnson has confirmed the keeper has had some ‘heart palpitations’ on the back of that so tests are being carried out as a precaution.

It means Sunderland are not yet willing to allow Patterson to continue his loan spell with Notts County.

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Notts County boss Ian Burchnall hopes Patterson will return next week. The young keeper is likely to be on the Sunderland bench for the visit of Portsmouth this weekend at the Stadium of Light.

Eddie Nketiah of Arsenal scores their team's fourth goal and his hat-trick past Lee Burge of Sunderland. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

"We were expecting him this week, but there was a setback in the Sunderland side and we just have to be a little bit patient," Burchnall told Nottinghamshire Live when asked why Patterson had yet to return.

"There's nothing too much that we can do. He won't be ready this weekend. But having had a good dialogue with Sunderland, I'm hoping that he is able to return early next week.

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"That's what they've said. But again, so many things happen internally with training and players and fitness.

"And I think a setback to Lee Burge just meant that Patto just had to hold on and they just had to secure something that end.

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"So at the moment we will go without Patto and we hope that he comes back next week.

"But, in the meantime, in the three games that we've missed with him, we've won all three.

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"I think Sam's played well. So again, it's great competition in the squad."

Sunderland head coach Lee Johnson said: “Lee Burge has had to undergo some heart tests.

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"He had Covid and on the back of that he has had some heart palpitations.

"I think we're due to get the results back this evening from his blood test.

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"I think he's alright, but it was the right thing to do from the point of view of the medical staff just to check that one out,” added the Sunderland boss.