Scout Report – Hakeeb Adelakun
Championship strugglers Sunderland are leading the race to sign Scunthorpe United winger Hakeeb Adelakun, though the Glandford Park club may want as much as £1million for the 21-year-old, meaning Sunderland will most likely be relying on some player sales to get this and other deals done.
Sunderland are not really in a position to wait until the end of the season for Adelakun, who would be out of contract and be available for a nominal compensation fee given that they are in very real danger of going down to League One and need reinforcements soon.
Duncan Watmore is out with a serious knee injury while others simply haven’t performed, meaning a new wide man is as much a priority as new defenders. Championship rivals Hull City and Barnsley have also shown an interest along with his former youth side Crystal Palace, though all three may be willing to wait until the summer before making their case.
His current boss Graham Alexander had publicly lambasted the winger in the past but has recently hailed his performances and his attitude – attributes which have led to him being named the EFL’s Young Player of the Month for November, as he has shown he is coming on in leaps and bounds. Here’s what we know about him so far.
Adelakun was born in Hackney and started his football career in London with Crystal Palace and West Ham United. Indeed, Crystal Palace are now one of the clubs interested in signing him and probably wish they’d never let him go.
Having failed to make the grade with either of those two sides, he moved to Scunthorpe United, where, in 2012, he made his league debut at the tender age of just 16, going on to make 119 appearances for the club since then, scoring 14 goals to date.
Style Of Play
A fast winger who can play on either side, Adelakun’s strengths are in the wide areas and getting quality balls to the strikers. One thing Sunderland have lacked in recent times is the sort of mobility Adelakun brings to the party so, assuming they can keep Lewis Grabban, having Adelakun as a supply line could exactly be what they need.
Coming along nicely now, Adelakun’s future lies higher than where Scunthorpe currently sit with all due respect to them, though how far he can go, I honestly don’t know. Assuming Sunderland stay up, the Championship would be a level that looks within his grasp right now.