Martin O'Neill admits Nicklas Bendtner's broken nose has put him on full alert for a new striker before the January transfer window closes.
The Blacks Cats boss, who has won six of his 10 games since taking charge at the Stadium of Light, watched on as his Danish forward suffered the injury against Swansea last week, and is now keeping a close eye on the transfer market.
Bendtner is expected to return in mid-February, leaving O'Neill with the inexperienced pair of Connor Wickham and Ji Dong-won, and a Fraizer Campbell lacking in match fitness.
"I have made enquiries and the injury to Bendtner has made me think about it, because you would not want to be short-handed," said O'Neill.
"I will certainly have attempted something, but if we do not I will have to accept the younger lads will just have to get down to it with Ji and Connor, and an injured Fraizer coming back.
"It would be nice just to bring in somebody even if it was not too expensive."
Bolton's veteran striker Kevin Davies, whose contract expires in six months, has been reported as a possible target for Sunderland, but O'Neill has yet to add credence to the speculation.
In the meantime, O'Neill must choose between Wickham, Dong-won and Campbell when Sunderland host local rivals Middlesbrough on Sunday in the fourth round of the FA Cup.