With 17-year-old striker Martyn Waghorn having already made the step up this season, having featured in the 4-0 defeat against Manchester United on Boxing Day, Keane has vowed to continue blooding those players he feels have the ability to cope with life in the first-team.
This admission comes the day after the Black Cats coach saw his talented youngsters beat Liverpool 5-3 to reach the quarter-finals of the FA Youth Cup, a result which highlights just why Keane is so determined to get them involved as soon as possible.
"One or two of them have a chance with the first team, especially next year when you will be allowed seven substitutes.
"Some of the lads who played (on Wednesday) will be involved next year, and it is a great incentive for them.
"They know I am at the games and they must feel that if they keep improving they will get a chance, they have seen Martyn Waghorn come through and get a chance.
"This club believes in the kids and if I feel they are good enough, they will be thrown in. It does not matter what age they are."