GOAL-HUNGRY Sunderland Ladies are bracing themselves for their first major pre-season test.
Carlton Fairweather’s side are currently just three games into their build-up to next month’s Women’s Super League opener at Liverpool.
And after a draw, defeat and win, Merseyside is the destination for the Lady Black Cats this weekend.
But it is the blue sector they are heading with a tough friendly at Everton.
Fairweather’s side will be up against the side who they have replaced in the WSL elite after the Toffees were relegated at the end of last season.
Despite Everton’s dire run of form in 2014 – coming after the promise of reaching the FA Cup final – the Sunderland head coach recognises this will be a significant assignment.
“It’s a massive test,” said Fairweather whose side ran riot 10-0 against a spirited but outclassed Glasgow Rangers at Consett.
“Obviously last year Everton were a Super League 1 side, so this is going to be a totally different type of game to Sunday.
“Match-play wise that match against Rangers was only our third pre-season game.
“We are still some way from playing Liverpool on March 25 but, at the same time, we need all these games to get us up to match fitness for Super League 1.”
The Sunderland coach will field his two on-trial players, who performed well in the win over Rangers at Consett.