Jordan Pickford to be handed Sunderland chance


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Sunderland goalkeeper Jordan Pickford is likely to be given more first-team chances this season, assistant boss Paul Bracewell has hinted.

The 21-year-old played in the 4-1 defeat at Tottenham on Saturday although he still caught the eye with saves to deny Harry Kane and Christian Eriksen.

Black Cats boss Sam Allardyce is trying to make his side harder to beat as he looks to successfully avoid the threat of relegation and decided to drop Vito Mannone in favour of Pickford.

Bracewell felt the former Preston loanee was unlucky to let four goals past him while he also praised the standard of his kicking and distribution.

“Obviously, Jordan came in for the FA Cup last week and did very well at Arsenal,” Bracewell told the Sunderland Echo. “I thought he did excellently again on Saturday.

“His kicking is excellent. We changed the goalkeepers for that and he made some good saves. He’ll be disappointed like we all are about conceding four goals going past him.

“He didn’t really deserve that, but that’s the Premier League for you and how easily you get punished.

“He’s been out on loan during his development and has had a fantastic time there. We always had a view to bring him back in January.

“We’ll have a good look this week and see how he does.”

Sunderland, who are 1.25 to be relegated to the Championship this season, entertain Bournemouth on Saturday and are 3.00 to win, with the Cherries 2.40 and the draw is 3.30.

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