Love joined the Black Cats from Premier League giants Manchester United in the summer and with the long injury list at the start of this campaign, he was called upon instantly.
An outstanding start
The first fixture of the season couldn’t have been much tougher against title favourites Manchester City, but Love impressed on his debut as his new side narrowly missed out on a point.
The 22-year-old kept his place in the side for the next two games against local rivals Middlesbrough and Shrewsbury in the EFL Cup, but struggled to maintain his form he showed in the game against the Citizens.
Moyes began to rely on experience
Love became a regular feature on the bench and in stepped the experienced Billy Jones, who had been performing exceptionally well up until his most recent injury, which saw Love come back into the side.
The youngster was re-introduced by Moyes against Liverpool, where he played very well, keeping Roberto Firmino at bay all game. The Wearsiders drew the match 2-2 thanks to Jermain Defoe’s two penalties and arguably deserved all three points.
Back in the first team
Love has most recently showed his versatility, where he sat at the base of the midfield three against Burnley in the FA Cup third round. The full back had a solid game and played the simple side of the game very effectively. The Black Cats drew the game 0-0 and will reluctantly travel to Turf Moor for the replay on January 17.
Love backed his boss' decision
The youngster commented on his manager’s decision to withdraw him from the starting 11 in a recent interview with the Sunderland Echo and expressed his desire to be playing football.
He said: “It was always going to take a bit of time for the new signings to settle, I think the gaffer took me out at the right time after the Shrewsbury game because I was poor that game, I admit that.”
With the departure of Didier Ndong on international duty, it may fall to Love to play a role in midfield. “I’ll play anywhere, as-long-as I’m playing,” He said.
Sunderland are at home to Stoke City on Saturday and Love will be hoping to keep his place in the side.