Sunderland Ladies took the step into the FA WSL1 back in 2015 but haven’t yet been able to push on and challenge at the top end of the division.

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After finishing 8th out of 10 teams this season, which stars could they bring into their side to avoid such a poor showing next year?

  1. Ini Omotong

Ini-Abasi Anefiok Umotong currently plies her trade for Oxford United in WSL2 but would certainly be good enough to make the step up to the top division. The Nigerian striker has only been at the club since February but impressed at former club Portsmouth, scoring 25 goals.

The 22-year-old is a deadly finisher and with speculation linking Beth Mead away from SAFC, Omotong may be the perfect replacement should the Lady Black Cats lose their first choice striker.

2- Sophie Walton

Sophie Walton was released by Notts County after her contract came to an end earlier this week. After taking time out last year for the birth of her first child, the midfielder failed to get back into the first team on a regular basis.

Walton revealed on Twitter earlier this week that she was looking for a new adventure and after being involved in the England youth set up, she could be the ideal signing.

One stumbling block could be the subject of a recent article which involved Walton. The former Leeds Ladies player stated she had other aspirations away from the beautiful game.

3. Leandra Little

Doncaster Rovers Belles defender Leandra Little is one of the most experienced heads in the game. Prior to her footballing career, the 32-year-old was a basketball player for the England women’s national team.

With the Belles being relegated this season, Sunderland Ladies could take advantage by trying to snatch the defender. However, it is likely Doncaster will try their best to keep hold of her.

4. Beth Hepple

After working her way through the ranks at Cestria Girls, Beth Hepple has featured largely for Durham Women. The winger’s ability to score goals and assist meant she received an England U20 call up recently.

If Sunderland want to look for players for the future, they should look no further. The fact that Hepple is currently studying Business and Management at Sunderland University would surely mean she is open to a move.

5. Mollie Burgess

Watford Ladies’ Mollie Burgess has supported her current club since she was just 5-years-old so tempting her up North may be tricky. However, she would be a fantastic signing for Sunderland.

The 18-year-old is strong at the back and is likely to improve as the years pass by.