Former Sunderland Director of Football Roberto De Fanti has been quoted by the Chronicle making a prediction over the future of midfielder Emanuele Giaccherini.
Giaccherini has been deprived of having an impact with the Black Cats because of injury and De Fanti, now an agent, has suggested what will happen to the Italian when he gets back to his best.
“Emanuele played a good first season (at Sunderland), with five goals and as many assists,” he said.
“Then this year he was very unlucky, injuring himself twice. I think that when he proves himself, Conte will not hesitate to call him up, given the estimation that he has for him.”
It’s an ambitious statement to make considering the number of obstacles, which are currently in the way before Giaccherini gets close to that point.
His first challenge is getting back into the current Sunderland side and some fans may feel as though the team has moved on since he was regularly available.
His second challenge also relates to the position the club could be in looking ahead to next season.
Dick Advocaat will try everything to keep the club in the Premier League, but relegation into the Championship is still very realistic.
If the Black Cats go down, it will be interesting to see if Giaccherini stays put and shows loyalty to the club or whether they choose to cash in on him, with his contract due to expire at the end of the season in 2017.
It’s encouraging that he’s backed by someone who used to work for the club, but whether he’ll become a regular for Italy is doubtful.