Is this what's holding back Will Grigg at Sunderland under Phil Parkinson?

Last Tuesday, something which was a major issue for the Black Cats was the long-ball up for Will Grigg.

Sunderland striker Will Grigg.
Sunderland striker Will Grigg.

The Black Cats were constantly lobbing the ball up the field, looking for Will Grigg, who, nine times out of ten, didn't win the header.

So, this begged the thought, is the height of Will Grigg benefiting the team?

In Will Grigg's history, he has only scored 13 headed goals, which is a tally of 12% of his total amount of goals - 109.

Grigg is 5ft 11" and currently, in League One, there was only four central-defenders, that played in their team's last match, that were smaller than the Sunderland striker.

Coincidently, one of those four players was Burton's Jake Buxton, who is the same height as Grigg, but last Tuesday Grigg was challenging 6ft 2" defender, John-Joe O'Toole, which could be a reason why the Black Cats were giving the ball away so often.

Meanwhile, Sunderland's other attacking options would be either Charlie Wyke or Marc McNulty. Wyke is close to returning for injury and will most likely return straight into the starting 11.

With Parkinson keeping the side playing a direct method, Wyke may benefit from this.

There are only four League One defences that have a central-defender bigger than Wyke, which shows that the Sunderland striker will be able to compete with most of the division's defences.


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Also, 24% of Wyke's goals are headed, with 16 out of his tally of 67 were scored with the head.

Until Charlie Wyke comes back from his injury, Phil Parkinson will most likely stick with Will Grigg up front but if he sticks with Grigg, he must change his long-ball tactics, as it is not benefiting the striker's game.

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