PHIL Bardsley believes Keiren Westwood has proved he can handle the Premier League’s pressure cooker, with the stopper on standby to make his full debut at Old Trafford.
Westwood made his first Premier League appearance as a second half substitute in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Aston Villa after fellow keeper Simon Mignolet was forced off with a broken nose.
Mignolet underwent surgery yesterday after a CT scan on Saturday night, but is a major doubt for Saturday’s trip to Manchester United – leaving summer signing Westwood in line to make his first Black Cats start.
But full-back Bardsley, also likely to feature at Old Trafford after replacing hamstring victim John O’Shea against Villa, has backed the Republic of Ireland keeper to cope with a daunting bow against the Premier League champions.
Read more of Phil Bardsley’s comments in today’s Sportmail.