Stockdale believes the new-look Checkatrade Trophy, which Sunderland have entered for the very first time, can help fill the void, with several Under-23 players set to play against Rochdale tonight in the opening group game.
Stockdale told the Sunderland Echo: “We have been in a situation where we have been cautious as a club not to let a player go out on loan because then he can't play in our first team until the next window.
“If you take that away, then you have to give something back to aid the development.
“I see this (competition) as a step forward. In three games time we might think it is brilliant or this needs to happen next.
“I am pleased they are trying something, though.
“We have had enquiries about some of our players on the fringes of the first team and if you had that option to bring them back after a month you would.
“Because now they can go out on loan but then only come back and play Under-23 games you lose them.
“Certainly with our situation, with our squad not being the biggest at the time, we have to look after ourselves a bit.
“From what the players may miss out on playing league football, hopefully this competition will replicate that plus they are training with the first team every day."