The Black Cats boss is adamant that his £10 million summer signing simply needs time to gel with his team-mates, after suffering patchy form since a move from Manchester CitySunderland boss Martin O'Neill has insisted £10 million signing Adam Johnson will "come good" after a disappointing start to life on Wearside.
Johnson has struggled for form since his move from Premier League champions Manchester City, in contrast to fellow summer arrival Steven Fletcher - who has scored five goals in seven league apperances.
| PREMIER LEAGUE LATEST
|13/2||Adam Johnson is 13/2 with Paddy Power to score the first goal for Sunderland against Aston Villa
However, O'Neill is confident Black Cats supporters will see the best of the 25-year-old after he fully recovers from a thigh injury sustained whilst on international duty with England in September.
“We have attacking threats and it’s about getting that galvanized,” the 60-year-old told the club's official website.
“That takes a little bit of time. For example, it’s Steven’s first season here and the same with Adam, who were the two players we bought [in the summer].
“Steven has had a really good start. Adam – I think through the injuries he sustained on international duty – just hasn’t been able to get a proper foothold.
“But I’ve no doubt he will come good. I imagine he will get back first of all to the form he has shown over the last couple of seasons, and secondly it won’t be far away.”