Sunderland have won more points than any other team in England’s top four divisions in 2020 and a big factor in their form as been the presence of Charlie Wyke.
The striker was unavailable for selection when Phil Parkinson arrived in the north-east but, after making his return from injury, the Black Cats were transformed on the pitch. Since his first start under the current boss against Blackpool just before Christmas, Sunderland have lost just once in 11 matches, picking up valuable wins against Wycombe and Ipswich in that time.
Wyke may have only contributed three goals and no assists in that time, leading to criticism from some sections of the fan base, but he has also brought the best out of teammates, most notably Lynden Gooch and Chris Maguire. Over the last 10 games, the pair have produced six and nine goal contributions respectively, with the front three proving vital in lifting their team back into the promotion picture.
Some fans have been praising Wyke as a result, showing support for Parkinson’s decision to hand him a regular starting place in the team, although others have not been impressed by the 27-year-old:
Anyone who says no is an idiot. Wyke although doesnt get his name on the score sheet is a big reaaon why gooch and maguire do (watch the goals against rochdale). Always a handful and league 1 defenders hate him. He does more than any stat or commentatory shows.
— Keithy D (@KeithY2Dickie) February 13, 2020
Yes, he’s a bit like how Emile Heskey was valued in the day. Not prolific but takes 2 defenders out the game and can make a bad ball half decent with hold up (if others support of course) gets stick but unsung hero at times for me. *opinion 😊
— SteveB (@Fantanafest73) February 13, 2020
As long as the required number of goals come from the front 3 as a unit, it’s not a problem.
Too much emphasis on individual statistics and not on worth to the team.
— Paul Summerside (@summerside49) February 13, 2020
Takes defenders out of the game to allow others ie. Gooch and Maguire more space, not my favourite but gets a lot of uncalled for stick.
— Gaz. (@GarrySummerson1) February 13, 2020
He’s absolute garbage 8 goals In 44 games he never wins a header and gets bullied off the ball why he starts is beyond me
— Richy kemp (@Kempoid84) February 13, 2020
For someone of his size, he’s infuriatingly lightweight on the ball and his anticipation in the box is poor. I accept he plays an important role in the current system, but would be tempted to give Lafferty an extended go. He should slot in without changing the system
— Medina (@bungle__bee) February 13, 2020
For a target man he’s poor in the air. Parkinson wanted him at Bolton so think we’ll see him as our number one.
— TheRokerEnd (@TheRokerEnd) February 13, 2020
He’s as poor a centre forward as I’ve seen up there in my years of supporting safc……I watched him again closely on Tuesday and he contributed nothing. Baffling selection
— Barrie Waller (@barrie_waller) February 13, 2020
Where do you stand on Wyke, Sunderland fans? Are you for or against the striker playing regularly in the current side? Tell us below!
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