Jeremain Lens' future is up to him, says Sam Allardyce

The Sunderland manager is leaving the Dutchman to decide his fate this summer.

Jeremain Lens' future is up to him, says Sam Allardyce
The future of Jeremain Lens at Sunderland remains up to the Dutchman says manager Sam Allardyce. | Photo: Sunderland Echo

The future of Sunderland winger Jeremain Lens at the Stadium of Light remains up to him, says manager Sam Allardyce

One to forget 

It hasn't been a season to remember for the Dutchman as he has struggled with both form and fitness since his move from Dynamo Kyiv last summer, making 23 appearances in all competitions with a return of four goals. 

The Netherlands international started for the Black Cats last Sunday in the final game of the campaign, scoring and assisting in the 2-2 draw with Watford

The 28-year-old's muted celebrations at Vicarage Road showed a clear sign of frustration, with him expected to depart from the North-East this summer, but Allardyce has publicly refused to shut the door on the Dutchman remaining at the club. 

Allardyce told the Sunderland Echo that it depends what "Lens wants to do," which is either "stay or fight or move on." The player will "decide that" when him and Allardyce "have a conversation". 

Above: Jeremain Lens celebrates his goal in Sunderland's 2-2 draw with Watford
Jeremain Lens celebrates his goal in Sunderland's 2-2 draw with Watford. | Photo: Getty Images 

Don't judge him just yet 

Lens was brought in by Dick Advocaat in the summer, and his former manager at both club and international level even identified his inability to track back, despite rating him enough to bring him in.

He has been on the fringes of the squad since Allardyce arrived in October but last month the manager said that he shouldn't be judged on his first season in the English top flight.

He told the Chronicle that Lens "didn't know how it was" in his debut campaign and that he had a "cultural shock" in terms of the "levels of performance required". 

Allardyce continued, saying that next season - if he decides to stay - will be the "big telling point" to see if he can "produce what he has abroad".