FRAIZER CAMPBELL has decided not to house-share with Darren Bent, but the young striker believes the pair can hit if off up front for Sunderland this season after making an impressive start to life on Wearside.
Since Bent followed Campbell to the North-East in the summer, having spent last season together at Tottenham, they have become close friends off the pitch.
But while sharing similar interests away from football has proved a bonus, Campbell has been forced to bide his time before being handed the opportunity to shine following his £3.5m switch from Manchester United.
Many thought the 22-yearold would spend much of the season playing back-up to Bent and Kenwyne Jones.
But in the last two Premier League matches, it has been Jones keeping the bench warm while the summer recruits have started together up front – and Campbell has been encouraged by what he has seen.
“Me and Darren are similar but we can play together,” he said. “I have also played with Kenwyne and played well, like we did on Tuesday against Birmingham. Darren has played well with him in the past too.
“We have three decent strikers and it’s good that we look like we can all play together.
“Me and Darren knew each other at Tottenham, so it has made it easier for us both to settle up here. We are both new to the club and we play on the computer, we listen to music and watch films, just normal stuff mates would do.
He begged me to let him stay at mine, but I have told him he has to leave.”
While his friendship with Bent has helped off the pitch, his 23rd minute header against Birmingham in the Carling Cup on Tuesday arrived while he was playing alongside Jones, giving Bruce food for thought ahead of Sunday’s visit of Wolves.
Bent is an almost certain starter at the Stadium of Light, although Campbell feels he is now ready to find the net more regularly having scored his first goal for the club alongside Jones.
That was the Huddersfieldborn striker’s first goal in club football since November 15 last year, when he scored in a defeat at Fulham. The two goals he scored three days earlier in the Carling Cup win over Liverpool were his only other Spurs goals.
After making his fourth start and eighth appearance for Sunderland, however, he is convinced things are going to be different.
“I was happy to get off the mark. It lifts a lot of weight off your shoulders because I have been thinking when ‘will it come?” he said. “Now I can just relax and concentrate on my football and I’m sure more will follow.”
The 15 goals he scored for Hull during the Tigers’ promotion season in the Championship highlighted his potential.
Now he wants to fulfil it, even if he does not have to play every game.
“I feel part of the team, part of the plans. Sometimes I will be on the bench, sometimes I will be in the team,” he said.
With Lee Cattermole still struggling with a heel problem, teenager Jordan Henderson could be in line to stay in the team that faces Wolves.
Henderson, 19, scored his first goal for the club on Tuesday and Bruce said: “I think we’ve got a very, very good young player on our hands.”