Steve Bruce still hopes to land a new striker

STEVE Bruce is hopeful of adding a striker to his squad before the transfer window closes on Wednesday.

Steve Bruce

STEVE Bruce is hopeful of adding a striker to his squad before the transfer window closes on Wednesday.

And the Sunderland manager has admitted that his side have lacked “that killer thing” of a regular goalscorer since Darren Bent joined Aston Villa

The Black Cats, who have scored just once in four games this season, have been linked with a number of forwards, including Craig Bellamy and Peter Crouch.

Bruce (pictured left) – also after a left-winger – confirmed he has “one or two things in the fire”, and hopes “something will come to fruition” by mid-week to hand his faltering side the “spark” it needs. “It’s been a tough week because we lost a derby game and now all of a sudden we’ve got the divine right to come here and turn Swansea over,” Bruce said.

“We should have done in my opinion, like we should have done at Brighton. We created enough chances in the game, we just have to find that killer thing which is scoring a goal.

“If I’m being honest we’ve lacked that really since we lost Bent to Villa. However, we have to make sure we don’t let it derail us and hopefully we might bring someone in who can give us a spark and get off and running.

“We’re looking to see if we can do something and we hope something will come to fruition.

We’ve got one or two things in the fire, let’s see what develops.

“We know that (left-wing) is our Achilles heel too, we understand that. It’s very, very difficult to just go out and find a wide left player who can meet our requirements.

“I think at the moment if I’m honest the striker issue is the one because then we can always put (Stéphane) Sessègnon to the left where we know he can play, but we’ll see what develops.”

Bruce will hope a new addition or two will placate the boo-boys who have emerged during Sunderland’s poor start to the campaign.

The Sunderland boss accepts criticism from the fans as an inevitable facet of the job, but believes he is close to completing construction of a “really decent squad”.

And he has called on his players to return from the impending international break with a result at home to Chelsea on Saturday week that will prove the “turning point” for their season.

He added: “We lost a derby game so the boos, it’s what it is unfortunately. I have to say some of the Press too, they start a frenzy and unfortunately if you’re not careful it engulfs you.

“We must win a match, we’ve got Chelsea at home and can that be the turning point for the season. Can we get a result against Chelsea and make sure we get off and running again?

“When you make so many changes, you forget. We had four loans players to help us last season, we haven’t got the biggest of squads.

“We lost (Bolo) Zenden and we lost Jordan (Henderson) so we had to make big, big changes and they do need time but I know we’re very, very close to having a really decent squad here.

“With the international break, there’s about six left so we hope that they can all come back in one piece.

“The worry is someone like John O’Shea, who’s been out for six weeks, he’s going to play back to back games. We hope that he can manage it and avoid another injury.”


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