Pickford is currently on loan at Championship side Preston, and a report in the Sunderland Echo has stated that Sam Allardyce is keeping a close eye on the young goalkeeper’s development ahead of the January transfer window.
Allardyce can currently call upon Costel Pantilimon and Vito Mannone as his two goalkeepers at the Stadium of Light, but he is reportedly contemplating recalling Pickford in January after the youngster’s impressive time in the Championship.
When the 21-year-old stopper left Sunderland on loan, it was planned to last the entire campaign, but there is a clause in the deal to bring him back in January if needed.
Clearly Allardyce does not agree with his predecessor Dick Advocaat that Pickford would benefit from spending the season out on loan, and the current boss has watched him in action for Preston to see if he is worth a call-up to the senior side.
He has kept nine clean sheets for the Lilywhites, whilst Pantilimon has managed just one at Sunderland this season, making some costly errors against his own team.
Pickford was expected to be challenging for the number one jersey on Wearside next season, but Allardyce could move to recall him in January if he believes the youngster will be a better top flight option than his current choices.