Report: Sunderland's Benji Kimpioka wanted by clubs all over Europe

New Sunderland AFC manager Phil Parkinson pictured at The Academy of Light on October 17, 2019 in Sunderland, England.

Will Phil Parkinson's League One strugglers Sunderland lose highly-rated forward Kimpioka in the January transfer window?

Benjamin Mbunga-Kimpioka of Sunderland (L) challenges Nathanael Ogbeta of City during the Checkatrade Trophy quarter final match between Sunderland and Manchester City U21 at Stadium of...

Clubs all over Europe are queuing up to sign Sunderland forward Benji Kimpioka, according to the Northern Echo, with the youngster’s contract set to expire at the end of the season.

The future of a Sweden U21 international has been a major cause for consternation at the Stadium of Light for a number of months now.

Kimpioka’s agent, Martin Kettle, claimed in the summer that the academy graduate would only commit his future to the Black Cats if he was guaranteed a regular place in the starting XI – a demand which had former manager Jack Ross seething (the Chronicle).

 

The 19-year-old has found minutes easier to come by since Phil Parkinson replaced Ross at the helm, however, and even scored a stoppage time equaliser during the recent 1-1 draw with Coventry City.

But his short-term future remains in doubt with the Echo claiming that Kimpioka has a number of admirers on the continent.

Benjamin Kimpioka of Sunderland runs at the Benfica defence during a Pre-Season friendly game at Estadio Municipal de Albufeira on July 18, 2019 in Albuferia, Portugal

Comparisons will inevitably be drawn with Josh Maja, another homegrown talent who Sunderland were forced to sell to Bordeaux 11 months ago with his contract running down. If Maja had stayed, perhaps the Black Cats would be a Championship team right now.

Kimpioka has been one of the few bright sparks for Sunderland since Parkinson took over in October and the under-fire coach will be desperate to keep hold of one of the few players in his squad capable of changing a game with a bit of individual magic.

Sunderland goal scorer Benjamin Kimpioka  during a Pre-Season friendly match between Hartlepool United and Sunderland AFC at Victoria Park on July 14, 2018 in Hartlepool, England.

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