- Sunderland secured a confident 3-1 victory over Birmingham, placing them in the playoff positions and potential promotion contenders.
- Dennis Cirkin, an important squad player for Sunderland, has suffered a hamstring injury and will undergo a scan to determine its severity.
- Cirkin’s versatility in defense and his potential, as recognized by former manager Lee Johnson, make him a valuable asset for the team’s promotion push.
A “fantastic” Sunderland player could be set for a spell out of the team after picking up an injury, according to an update from reliable journalist James Hunter.
Impressive Sunderland beat Birmingham
The Black Cats were back in Championship action on Saturday lunchtime, as they took on Wayne Rooney’s Birmingham City at the Stadium of Light. It has been a good start to the season for Tony Mowbray’s men and that continued against their Midlands opponents, as the hosts strode to a 3-1 victory.
Jobe Bellingham’s opener set Sunderland on their way to a routine three points, and even though they were pegged back before half-time, an own goal from Dion Sanderson was then added to by a close-range effort from Adil Aouchiche, as Mowbray’s side ran out comfortable winners in the end.
The victory means that Sunderland have snuck into the playoff positions by virtue of West Brom losing 2-1 away to Southampton later in the day, with the Black Cats sixth in the table and once again looking like they could be genuine promotion contenders in 2023/24.
While there is plenty to be positive about at the moment, an injury concern has emerged after the weekend triumph – one that could leave supporters worried.
Dennis Cirkin injury blow
Taking to X after Saturday’s win over Birmingham, Hunter confirmed that Sunderland ace Dennis Cirkin is “set for a scan” to find out the severity of the injury he suffered in the warm-up, ruling him out of the game. Mowbray also provided a similar update in his post-match press conference, saying:
“Ultimately, it was his hamstring. He trained yesterday and said he felt it after training, but then woke up this morning and said he felt fine, good. We pushed on and then in the warm-up he said he could feel it and didn’t want to risk it. He’ll go for a scan tomorrow and we’ll see what it is.”
The hope is that Cirkin’s injury setback is not a serious one, but hamstring issues can be awkward ones to overcome, with even a slight tweak potentially taking a few weeks to heal.
While not necessarily a guaranteed starter so far this season, the 21-year-old has still been an important squad player, with Cirkin’s statistics highlighting that he has made eight Championship appearances to date, averaging 1.3 tackles per game and registering one assist in that time.
Dennis Cirkin’s key career appearances
In the past, former Sunderland manager Lee Johnson has lauded the youngster as a “fantastic” player who could have a “top career” ahead of him, and he is going to be a key figure in the Black Cats’ promotion push.
Squad depth is something that is so vital for any team with aspirations of making it into the Premier League, and Cirkin is the type of player that can be invaluable in that respect, not always starting but proving to be a strong option in defence, whether that be in a central or left-sided role.