When Sunderland face Fleetwood on Tuesday evening, they will do so full of confidence.
They swatted fellow promotion hopefuls Doncaster to one side in recent weeks, and their win over Burton demonstrated that the Mackems truly have the wind in their sails.
On the chalkboard
Lee Johnson won’t want to make too many changes to the side that beat the Brewers so comfortably at the weekend.
However, if he is thinking of making a change, then he must drop one specific player to the bench again. That happens to be Southampton loanee Jake Vokins.
The left-back has had a pretty torrid start to life at the Stadium of Light and to date, his temporary spell has been a difficult one. Roker Report said it was hard to picture many worse Sunderland debuts after the 2-2 draw with MK Dons and he’s looked unconvincing ever since.
He was at fault for the second goal during the defeat to Shrewsbury and misplaced a succession of passes in the win over Burton.
It eventually saw him hauled off in the second period in place of a man who simply has to start on Tuesday night.
The answer to their woes with Vokins lay at the feet of another loanee; Jordan Jones.
The winger has only played six times and started twice since his move south of the border from Rangers, but he’s caught the eye in his minimal time on the pitch.
He was hailed for his efforts by supporters after his cameo off the bench last time out and as his fitness grows game by game, he could become a force to be reckoned with.
Should Jones start on Tuesday?
Jones was only on the field for 23 minutes against Burton but managed three key passes – the second-highest number of anyone in a Black Cats jersey. On top of that, he finished the clash with a pass success rate of 100%.
You only need to heed words from Glasgow Live reporter Mark McDougall to understand what he can offer: “In all honesty, he should stroll League One if his attitude is right when he goes down there. He’s two-footed so can go inside or outside and has pace to burn.”
The journalist added: “He can be a joy to watch when he’s on his game because of how direct and tricky he is.”
Johnson has already extracted similar qualities from Aiden McGeady in recent weeks so it’s exciting to see what he could do with Jones.
He needs to be unleashed on Fleetwood, not just because of his individual attributes, but because Vokins is struggling down the left.
AND in other news, 1 goal in 15 games: SAFC ace who left Parkinson fuming has been a passenger for months…