Why Sunderland won't play any pre-season friendlies at the Stadium of Light as summer plans are announced

Sunderland will travel to Portugal for a pre-season training camp as they prepare for the 2022/23 Championship campaign – but won’t play any friendly matches at the Stadium of Light.

Wednesday, 25th May 2022, 12:36 pm

The Black Cats squad will now have some time off after beating Wycombe in the League One play-off final, before returning to the Academy of Light for testing on June 22.

Sunderland will then play a set of behind-closed-doors fixtures before heading to Portugal in July, when they will have two fixtures abroad.

When they return to Wearside, the Black Cats plan to arrange four domestic fixtures before the start of the Championship season on July 30 - yet friendly matches will be played away from the Stadium of Light due to concerts taking place.

Sunderland fans at the Stadium of Light. Picture by FRANK REID

The EFL season is set to start earlier than usual because of the 2022 Qatar World Cup.

Sunderland have announced that further information on pre-season friendly fixtures will be announced in due course.