Jack Rodwell and Callum McManaman started for Sunderland Under-21s tonight in their final Checkatrade Trophy game at Grimsby Town.
Rodwell has featured in all of Sunderland's Checkatrade Trophy games so far, with winger McManaman given some much-needed minutes to boost his fitness levels.
Donald Love and Brendan Galloway are the other two first players involved against League Two Town.
Sunderland prop up Northern Group H following defeats to Scunthorpe United and Doncaster Rovers.
Neither the Black Cats or Grimsby, a place and point above Sunderland, can qualify for the knockout stage of the competition.
The game could still go to penalties though if the score is level at full-time.
Sunderland U21s: Talbot, Love, Galloway, Bale, Beadling, Rodwell, Gamble, E. Robson, McManaman, Diamond, Molyneux
Subs: Taylor, Woud, Storey, Hume, Hackett, Wright, Greenwood