The 22-year-old Irishman has been limited to just one start and eight substitute appearances this season after starting the campaign fighting for match fitness following two serious knee injuries.
"It's been really tough for him. He's been involved in the squad but he hasn't started and of course it's frustrating.
"It's something we would look at in the summertime. He's a genuinely good lad. He hasn't moaned about it to me, but he did say he would like to play.
"His first choice would be playing for Sunderland, but at some stage or another he has to play."