Sunderland man Patrick Roberts has been thriving due to his change of role at the club, according to Josh Bunting.
The Lowdown: Reading winner
Tony Mowbray’s side continued on their march towards the Championship play-off positions with a 1-0 win over Reading thanks to a late Roberts winner just six minutes from time.
Sunderland finally got their reward that the possession and attempts show with the hosts dominating 66% of the ball whilst firing off four more shots and shots on target than their visitors (BBC), as Sunderland moved just a point behind the top six.
Taking to Twitter after the game, Sunderland fan and journalist Bunting raved over Roberts’ performance which saw him operate from right-midfield and awarded the freedom to drift inside on his favoured left-foot, Bunting tweeted:
“Patrick Roberts has been very good and important for weeks now, Amad moving into the 10 role has allowed him to find this form. The goal he’s alert to take advantage of the Reading mistake and the finish he’s just so confident. So strong at carrying the ball and drawing players in.”
The Verdict: Difference maker
The 26-year-old was central to the Mackem’s win with him almost picking up two assists before he opened the scoring late on, to make it eight goal involvements for the season.
His first major opening created came from a sublime chipped ball over the Reading defence, which found Aji Alese’s run in behind but the 22-year-old was unable to take his chance.
He should’ve had a second assist later on as his perfectly weighted through ball from roughly a similar position after cutting onto his left-foot, found Trai Hume who was denied by Joe Lumley, the second of four key passes on the afternoon, as well as winning five duels (via Sofascore).
The former Manchester City man was at the heart of everything as his stinging shot forced Lumley into a difficult stop from distance, the first of his two shots on target.
His second was the winner which he thumped home from close range after stealing possession in the penalty box, one of the five duels he won on the afternoon with his performance earning him an 8.4 rating, significantly higher than anyone else on the pitch.