STORIES about the Black Cats scored the biggest number of hits on the Echo website in 2013.
SAFC topped the chart in both our sports and news web sections with our transfer window story on the sale of Mignolet garnering almost 33,000 hits.
In the news section, 22,000 readers logged on to read about SAFC chairman Ellis Short drinking in Life of Riley with fans after Sunderland’s win against Everton.
Echo digital editor Ross Robertson said: “Sunderland is a city that loves football so it’s no surprise that most of the top 50 stories are about SAFC.
“The disappointing news that star keeper Simon Mignolet was off to Liverpool was the top story on our site this year, and shows how well-respected he was among fans.”
He added: “It’s encouraging to see positive stories about the city doing well – with plans for a Hilton hotel in Sunderland, and Wearside beating Newcastle to hosting the largest funfair in the region, making our top five news stories.
“It goes to show that newspapers aren’t just all about bad news.
“Unfortunately, there was sad news among the happier tales.
“The death of schoolboy Matthew Hayes in a bus accident in November, and the heart-wrenching tale of hero soldier William Pemberton, who took his own life after suffering Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, greatly touched our readers, many of whom left tributes which we hope will be of some comfort to their families.
“Our thoughts are with them at what will be a very difficult time.”
Top five news stories
Top five sports stories
•Mignolet to reject Sunderland deal – 19,336