The 23-year-old midfielder was one of the hottest prospects in English football when he broke onto the Premier League scene in the 2008/09 season at Everton.
His performances earned international recognition - winning him caps for England at every level from Under-16 to the senior team - and interest from a host of the top clubs in England, including Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City.
Ultimately it was City who secured the promising youngster’s talents in 2012, with the then-Premier League champions spending a fee of roughly £12 million to sign the midfielder - who also started his career as a central defender. However, his career has taken a downtown since moving to the Eithad, with playing chances limited, and just 16 league appearances made in the two seasons spent in Manchester. Despite his promising international future, he has made just one senior appearance for the Three Lions since completing his move, and, with first-team opportunities once again looking limited this season, Rodwell chose to move to Sunderland when they came calling over the summer.
The Black Cats parted with £10 million for the youngster, and he has gone on to appear in nine Premier League games this season - starting seven of them. He started his career at the Stadium of Light impressively, netting his only goal for the club in just his second game, although he has struggled to make an impact since then - with Sunderland’s form faltering.
However, Black Cats head coach Gus Poyet is willing to remain patient with the midfielder, believing that he has improved since he first arrived in the North East.
Speaking to the Chronicle, Poyet said: “He is better, he understands a few things better. I couldn’t judge him for four games, I wanted him to have a few more to have a proper idea of what he was doing and what I need him to do better.
“It is up to him to start doing things on the pitch.”
When asked how long it would take for Rodwell to reach his potential, the coach replied: “As soon as we start performing and winning games.”