Sunderland boss Steve Bruce is hoping new signing Asamoah Gyan can ease the goal-scoring burden on Darren Bent. Ghana striker Gyan recently completed his record £13million-plus move to the Stadium of Light and came off the bench to score on his debut against Wigan at the weekend.
The Black Cats have relied on Bent to fire in the goals since his move from Tottenham, and the 26-year-old hit the back of the net 24 times in the Premier League last season.
"We have brought in another guy to give him a hand," Bruce said.
"It looks a very fruitful partnership, I hope, but certainly Darren has contributed massively over the last 12 months.
"Since he walked through the door, he has scored goal after goal.
"We have had the privilege of watching him now over 12 months and he is a natural goalscorer."
Bent's form in front of goal earned him a place in the England squad for the recent Euro 2012 qualifiers against Bulgaria and Switzerland after missing out on a World Cup place.
He added: "Darren could easily have sulked and gone away and moped, but he has come back and made sure he has given himself every opportunity again, which is terrific.
"Now with Jermain Defoe missing, maybe it might be his chance."