James Wilson shows Sunderland what they are missing

Sunderland fans celebrate on the final whistle during the Sky Bet League One match between Bradford City and Sunderland at Northern Commercials Stadium on October 6, 2018 in Bradford,...

League One Sunderland reportedly tried and failed to sign James Wilson on loan from Manchester United in August.

Sunderland fans celebrate on the final whistle during the Sky Bet League One match between Bradford City and Sunderland at Northern Commercials Stadium on October 6, 2018 in Bradford,...

Sunderland’s relationship with Manchester United has opened plenty of doors in recent years. Countless players have swapped Old Trafford for the Stadium of Light, including John O’Shea, Kieran Richardson, Wes Brown and more recently Paddy McNair and Max Johnstone.

But this still did not help Sunderland sign James Wilson.

The highly-rated Manchester United striker was reportedly a target for the Black Cats in August, according to the Sunderland Echo. But Wilson, who has had previous loan spells at Brighton and Derby, joined Aberdeen instead and showed Sunderland what they are missing on Wednesday night.

James Wilson of Manchester United celebrates scoring the second goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Hull City at Old Trafford on May 6, 2014 in...

The 22-year-old ended a run of four games without a goal in stunning fashion in Aberdeen’s 3-0 Scottish Premiership win against Hamilton in midweek, firing a thunderbolt into the top corner from 25 yards.

"He is capable of those moments, but we're showing patience," manager Derek McInnes told the BBC. “It shows you the level the boy can play at.”

The Dons fans were understandably impressed, too, after Wilson showed his star quality for perhaps the first time in an Aberdeen shirt.

Sunderland, meanwhile, appear to still be on the lookout for new strikers.

Owner Stewart Donald told BBC Radio Newcastle that a centre-forward could be on the agenda heading into the January transfer window, particularly with Charlie Wyke struggling with injuries and Josh Maja the only player who has scored more than five goals so far under Jack Ross.

James Wilson of Derby during the Sky Bet Championship match between Burton Albion and Derby County at Pirelli Stadium on August 26, 2016 in Burton-upon-Trent, England.

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