The Sunderland player who could benefit from Johnson being ruled out

Sunderland's Adam Johnson is a doubt for this weekend's match against Swansea City.

Gus Poyet has told the Shields Gazette that Adam Johnson is a doubt for the Black Cats' match against Swansea City this weekend and that news may benefit one particular member of the squad. 

Although no player ever wants their teammate to be injured, Ricky Alvarez is likely to think his chances are boosted with Johnson on the sidelines. 

The Argentine playmaker and Johnson appear to be directly in competition for a place in the Sunderland line-up this season and Alvarez will be looking to stake his claim this weekend. 

Although Poyet has refuted claims that Johnson and Alvarez can't play together today in the Shields Gazette, it is hard to see them both working in tandem. 

The attacking duo both possess similar skill-sets and they offer little to the side in a defensive sense, meaning that accommodating both would be a tough task without completely changing the side's system.

It means that they are likely to remain in a battle with each other for a place in the team for the remainder of the season and Alvarez will feel that this is his first chance to really impress.

The Inter Milan loanee has had to play second fiddle for the whole campaign so far - making just five starts - but he has begun to show signs that he can make a success of his time at the Stadium of Light. 

Alvarez scored a brilliant goal against Fulham in midweek, as he danced past the Championship side's defence before lashing the ball into the back of the net, and it was a sign of the quality that he can bring to the Wearsiders.

Alvarez will now be looking to prove that he can have a similar impact at the top level and, by doing so, he may just keep Johnson out of the team longer than his current injury will. 

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