Adam Johnson has long been linked with a move away from Manchester City and, now he has finally sealed a switch to Sunderland, the winger will hope to kick-start his career back in the north east.
Johnson’s career has stalled since his move to City three years ago from his native Middlesbrough and he now has got the transfer he has apparently craved to a club where he should enjoy both a starting and starring role.
Johnson, still only 25, is a well-respected talent but it appears his move to the Barclays premier league champions proved to be a backward step in his development and he was in danger of fading away after such a promising start to life as a professional.
When he burst onto the scene for Boro in 2007, Johnson, while clearly raw, was being talked about as a regular England winger of the future and the man who would not only eclipse the achievements of another Middlesbrough product, Stewart Downing, but ensure his older colleague would struggle to get a look in for the Three Lions after the 2010 World Cup.
That Downing, struggling to establish himself at Liverpool at present, has 23 more caps than Johnson reveals that prediction has simply not turned out to be true and Johnson has, so far, failed to live up to expectations.
Think back to an outstanding individual performance from the winger for his country in a Euro 2012 qualifier against Switzerland in 2010 – when he also scored – and it is fair to say the momentum he was expected to gain from that outing never materialised.
However, after showing glimpses of his talent when given a chance at City, he now has the perfect stage on which to showcase his ability by playing Soccer games week in, week out.
The hope is that not only Johnson and Sunderland will benefit but England, too, will finally get their hands on a winger they can rely on on a regular basis.