Gateshead keen on loan for Sunderland youngster Martin Smith
Photo source: Sunderland Echo

Another promising Sunderland talent could be on the move before the loan deadline comes, with Gateshead having expressed an interest in Martin Smith, according to the Sunderland Echo.

The Black Cats already have a number of their under-21s dotted around the non-league, as well as Mikael Mandron being in League Two with Hartlepool United, and it looks like Smith could add to that list of on loan players sooner rather than later.

Gateshead looking to strengthen promotion charge

Gateshead currently sit 11th in the National League table, with 31 points from their opening 20 games.

The Tynesiders finished 10th in the final standings last season and are looking to use that as a foundation for a promotion charge this year, with them only five points off the play-off spots at the moment.

One Sunderland man has already been recruited to strengthen this challenge, another midfielder George Honeyman seeing his loan spell extended earlier this week with the club, and now they are keen on bringing Smith in to bolster their options even further.

Youngster looking to realise potential with experience

Smith has been a stalwart in the under-21 side this season who currently sit at the top of the Under 21 Premier League, starting all nine of the team's fixtures so far.

Though not amongst the goals in the league, the 20-year-old scored a crucial penalty in the Premier League International Cup last week too, sending his side through to the next round as they defeated Athletic Bilbao 2-1 on the night.

He is certainly enjoying great experiences with his club's Academy, but playing senior football on a regular basis would certainly help him develop at a rapid rate, building him physically and maturing him in many ways, such as with his decision making and awareness.

Sunderland have links with Gateshead as they are coached by a former Black Cats manager, Malcolm Crosby, who has already used this link to recruit Honeyman this season.

With under-21 manager Andy Welsh stressing the importance of loans suiting the young player, it looks like this is another that could certainly materialise, and that the two youngsters could help each other with their development.