Sunderland have been a dismal run of form ever since Michael Beale took charge in mid-December and the former Premier League side have yet to make a single signing in January.
After winning just once in their last four outings in the Championship, the Black Cats have fallen as low as 10th in the table and are three points behind Coventry City, who occupy the final playoff spot.
The biggest worry for supporters of the Wearside club is the lack of goals in the team. Jack Clarke is the top goalscorer this season but has been solely responsible for 35 percent of the side’s goals in the league. Additionally, Beale’s men are in the bottom half of the table when it comes to goals scored.
Sunderland currently have five centre-forwards on the books: Nazariy Rusyn, Mason Burstow, Eliezer Mayenda, Hemir Semedo and Jewison Bennette. Between all five frontmen, just one goal has been scored, which came from Rusyn in a 2-0 win over Preston North End on New Year’s Day.
Nevertheless, Sunderland have been linked with a plethora of strikers since the January transfer window opened up, including AFC Wimbledon’s prolific goalscorer Ali Al-Hamadi, who is currently away with the Iraq national team at the AFC Asian Cup.
— AFC Wimbledon (@AFCWimbledon) December 30, 2023
The 21-year-old has been in fine form with the League Two outfit, having scored 17 goals and recorded seven assists in all competitions which has reportedly garnered interest from several clubs in England’s second tier, including Sunderland.
However, according to a report from the East Anglian Daily Times, Sunderland’s promotion rivals Ipswich Town are looking to complete a deal for the 21-year-old before next Thursday’s deadline.
TeamTalk once reported that Wimbledon were looking for just £1.5 million for the striker, but now Ipswich are set to come out on top in the race for the former Wycombe Wanderers number ‘9’.
Al-Hamadi is one of the most wanted strikers in the Football League this term and so this would be an incredibly wise piece of business for Ipswich Town to complete. However, the Tractor Boys are not struggling for goals this season, yet are still set to sign him.
Sunderland have the lowest number of goals of any team in the Championship’s top ten so it’s peculiar that the side didn’t make more of an attempt to pip Ipswich to the signing of Al-Hamadi. Perhaps it’s not too late.