Larsson backs Sunderland preparations

Seb Larsson

Seb Larsson

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SEB Larsson says Sunderland’s pre-season could hardly be going any better.

And he believes that the Black Cats are on course to hit the ground running in the new campaign after a comprehensive win at Kilmarnock last night added to the feel-good factor in the camp.

“I’m very pleased with how it is all going,” he told the Echo.

“Both from a personal point of view and as a team I think things are coming together well and every game we play we seem to be taking another step forward.”

The Swedish international was a thorn in the Killies’ side with his threat from set-pieces.

And he came within a whisker of getting his first goal for the Black Cats with a superbly struck second-half free-kick which keeper Anssi Jaakola palmed away from the top left-hand corner of his goal with a brilliant reaction save.

“I thought it was in,” smiled Larsson. “ I struck it really well but the keeper also did really well to keep it out.”

It didn’t cost Sunderland in the long run – Stephane Sessegnon and Connor Wickham grabbing goals in what turned out to be a comfortable 2-1 victory for the Wearsiders.

And Larsson said: “I think it was a good performance from us all over the pitch. Very encouraging.

“I thought we were good in defence, in midfield, in attack and that’s all you can ask for in pre-season.

“This was very much a British-style game – our opponents were quick and motivated and tried to get the ball forward quickly whenever they could.

“They tried to make sure that we never had time on the ball and they were quick in the tackle. It was probably exactly the sort of game we needed at this stage but we handled it well and played some good football as well as winning the game.

“We have a few more games to get through before the season starts but that’s good because I think we are getting sharper all the time and I’m confident that when the first game of the season comes around the team will have gelled, the players will be prepared and the squad will be ready.”