SAFC TEN YEARS ON: Dwight Yorke, Dean Whitehead and Roy Keane

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Here’s what the Echo was reporting on SAFC 10 years ago today.

ONE OF THE LADS: Dwight Yorke prepares for his full Sunderland debut at Ipswich Town tomorrow with skipper Dean Whitehead praising the World Cup star as “just one of the lads.”

Trinidad & Tobago captain Yorke may a larger than life character who is portrayed as a playboy by some of the tabloid press.

But Whitehead insists the former Manchester United treble-winner has already become a much-loved addition to the Black Cats’ squad.

Yorke went on as substitute as Sunderland drew 1-1 at home to Leicester last weekend but it is likely to start for the first time at Portman Road tomorrow (3pm kick-off).

Whitehead said: “Yorkie’s done everything in the game – won the European Cup, league titles, the FA Cup, played in the World Cup.

“He’s probably been on the front of every paper and magazine going, but he’s honestly just one of the lads here already.

“He’s a bouncy character and loves the banter. It’s like he’s any other player from any other club – I think he took about five minutes to settle in.

“We know the quality and experience he brings to the club. Some of his touches last weekend were brilliant and his movement will cause a lot of problems in this league.

“It’s great for us in midfield because he is always looking to get the ball to feet and link the play.”

Sunderland are unbeaten in four matches and won their last two on the road, 2-1 at Derby and 3-0 at Leeds. Ipswich have also not lost in four Championship outings.


Roy Keane says Sunderland can be six shooters if they maintain their unbeaten run.

The Black Cats have climbed from the foot of the Championship to within a win of the play-off position after a four-game losing start to the season was followed by wins against West Brom, Derby and Leeds and last weekend’s home draw with Leicester.

A lot of results would have to go Sunderland’s way if they are to make it into the top six from 14th place this weekend.

But Keane is keen to keep the Black Cats upwardly mobile.

He said: “When you look at the league table, if we can get two or three victories together then we will be up near the top. Equally, if the teams behind us do well and we don’t, then they will go above us because it is very close at the moment.

“That’s the beauty of the league.

“There are so many teams that can get into the top six and get into the play-offs – but the thing is, getting that run of results you need.

“What pleased me last week was the fact that we weren’t beaten and we showed a desire to get points from every game, because all those points total up at the end of the season.

“We want to be up there at the top and if we can continue this little unbeaten run that we’re on, then we’ve got a chance.”