Jack Rodwell says he will become a centre-back for Sunderland

Sunderland Gates

Sunderland midfielder Jack Rodwell has generally been used in central midfield throughout his professional career to date.

Jack Rodwell has told the Guardian that both Dick Advocaat and Sam Allardyce have planned to use him at centre-back at Sunderland.

The former Everton man has generally been used as a central midfielder throughout his professional career to date.

However, when he was breaking through he was utilised in defence, and that is where he believes his future lies.

“I’ve played at centre-half plenty of times before,” he said. “To be honest, from England Under-16s, through the 17s and 18s, really all the way through my youth career, I played at centre-half. For some reason, when I made my debut at Everton I just played in central midfield and it went from there. I’ll play at the back again though, no problem.”

“I’ve spoken about it with Sam but we spoke about it under Dick Advocaat as well. Dick was trying to involve me in there a bit in the training sessions. We’ll see how it goes. If the manager asked me to play there, I think it would be natural for me.

“Eventually, I think I’ll probably end up at centre-half. By the time I get to 28 or 29 I imagine I’ll be a defender.”

Rodwell has been utilised at centre-back fleetingly by Allardyce already this season.

The 24-year-old has sometimes struggled when handed a midfield role at the Stadium of Light, but he could fit well in a three-man defence.

Rodwell has the power to play at the back, and his ability in possession means that he could be converted into a ball-playing centre-back with little fuss.

Crucial to this transition will be staying fit though, as injuries have plagued Rodwell’s career so far.

The former England international has missed large chunks of action with fitness issues, and he will be hoping that he can have a prolonged run away from the treatment table after visiting a specialist in Germany last week.

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