Charlie Methven sets ambitious Boxing Day challenge for Sunderland supporters

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Charlie Methven has challenged supporters to 'put a marker down' and show the rest of the country that 'SAFC is back' on Boxing Day.

Bradford City are the visitors and Methven wants to break the 40,000 barrier.

Sunderland fans at Valley Parade earlier this season

Sunderland fans at Valley Parade earlier this season

Their highest home attendance of the season so far came on September 1st, when 32,193 watched a 1-1 draw with Oxford United.

"Historically the Stadium of Light has enjoyed big crowds on Boxing Day as fans from further afield return home for Christmas," he said.

“Our home attendance this season is currently averaging about 30,000. That is by far the highest in the league and would actually put us ahead of almost all the Championship clubs and about half of the Premier League. That is phenomenal and shows the fans’ real passion for this brilliant club.

“Stewart, Juan and I want us all to raise the roof on Boxing Day and make it a match to remember. The lads are pushing hard towards the top of the league but they need as much support as possible if we are all to achieve our objective of promotion.

"Be there on Boxing Day to show that we are all in this together and to put a marker down to the rest of the country that SAFC is back.”

Tickets for the game start from £10 for young supporters aged under 16, £15 for under 22s, £19.50 for over 65s and £22 - £27.50 for adult tickets.

Bradford are currently enduring a wretched season and sit bottom of the table with just ten points.

Sunderland face a busy and crucial festive period, facing top of the table Portsmouth on December 22nd.

They welcome Shrewsbury three days after the Bradford game, before travelling to Blackpool on New Year's Day.