One of the bright sparks of Sunderland's poor season has been the performances of Jordan Pickford, who has stepped up and made a huge impact with the Black Cats, and has been praised for doing so by teammate Victor Anichebe.
After being highly regarded as one of the best young goalkeepers in the country during his time at the academy, Pickford has finally been given his run in the side due to an elbow injury to Vito Mannone and so far the Englishman has taken his chance.
His performances so far have not only given him the number one spot in the Sunderland side but also saw him gain his first call-up to the England side by Gareth Southgate with Pickford featuring on the bench during the Three Lions victory over Scotland at Wembley, showing just how far he has developed in such a short space of time. Pickford played a major role in Sunderland's victory over Bournemouth and another teammate who had a hand to play in the win, Victor Anichebe, has had plenty of praise for him.
Praise from Anichebe
The striker told the Sunderland Echo that everyone can see Pickford is a "top young goalkeeper," stating that "some of the saves he makes and his distribution - it is incredible" and that is something that the Sunderland fans are noticing on a regular basis.
Speaking of the victory against the Cherries, Anichebe gave plenty of credit to Pickford who he believes "kept us in the game" with the saves he made that the striker claimed were "unbelievable."
Anichebe continued to heap praise onto Pickford saying how he is one of the "best young keepers I have seen" before saying something that many Sunderland fans won't want to hear by claiming he believes "some of the big clubs might come in for him."
A situation that is very realistic with both Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur reportedly interested in acquiring the services of Pickford. The Red Devils scouted him during his Summer appearances with the England U-21 squad and Tottenham have been keen on Pickford since his impressive performances last season after being recalled from Preston North End.
Pickford's future may come down to whether or not Sunderland can remain in the Premier League as someone with his ability belongs in the top flight, but having signed a contract extension until 2020 Pickford could be tied down to a lengthy run with the club.