Jason Steele: The three things Sunderland need to to succeed in the Championship

Steele has over 200 Championship appearances to his name
Steele has over 200 Championship appearances to his name
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Organisation, fitness and hunger.

That is new Sunderland signing Jason Steele's checklist to succeed in the notoriously competitive second tier of English football.

Steele, who has over 200 Championship appearances under his belt, echoed Simon Grayson's regular pre-season message that adjusting to the physical demands of the league will be crucial.

He said: "You have to be organised, fit, and hungry – I'd say they are the main things you need to succeed in this league. If you do that, and have some individual quality, you will win more than you lose.

"It is relentless – it's Saturday-Tuesday, more or less for eight months. Anyone who tells you that's not tough is telling lies – it's physically and mentally draining.

"The best teams, the ones that go up, stay hungry, focused, and work hard for each other week-in and week-out.

"That's what we are building here."

Steele also said that Sunderland will need to be proactive and go searching for wins if they are to enjoy a successful season.

With the league table invariably offering only a small points gap between most of the teams in the division, Steele said winning games becomes even more valuable.

He said: "Draws are no good.

"You're better off losing two and winning two, than staying unbeaten by drawing four games.

"A lot of teams, especially when they are away from home, try to nullify you and then hit you on the counter-attack.

"That's why you see a lot of away wins in the Championship."