Sunderland new-boy Jake Vokins needs to step up quickly after his performance against Shrewsbury Town, according to Kevin Phillips.
The Stadium of Light legend, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, claimed the 20-year-old is “a good little player” but insisted he “needs to adjust” to the style of football in League One.
The Black Cats signed Vokins on loan from Southampton in January – a temporary replacement for the injured Denver Hume.
However, the left-back has endured a difficult start to his career on Wearside.
Vokins drew criticism for his performance in a 2-1 loss at Shrewsbury Town on Tuesday night, where he won just 29 per cent of his duels. (Wyscout)
When asked by Football Insider for his assessment of Vokins’ first two appearances for the Black Cats, Phillips said: “Vokins needs to get up to speed quickly.
“It can be a big challenge coming from Southampton to League One. It was not long ago that I was watching him in a cup game for Southampton. He has gone from playing in a Premier League side to League One and physically it is very different, it is tough. He needs to adapt quickly.
“I have seen too many players move to Sunderland and not perform. I hope he is not one of those.
“He needs to adapt and get used to the hustle and bustle of it. The games will come thick and fast.
“I will not judge him on one of two games. I will give him four, five, six and hopefully he will improve. He is a good little player. He just needs to adjust.”