Jack Ross has this message for Sunderland's 'amazing' support as ex-striker hails 'goosebump' moment
Sunderland supporter groups have gone to great lengths in recent months to bolster the atmosphere and matchday experience inside the Stadium of Light - and it is reaping rewards.
The Red and White Army fan group organised a campaign to raise funds for an impressive new flag display, featuring the club’s achievements over the years and Black Cats' legends.
The fan-funded flag display was unveiled before the Coventry City game in the Roker End, while new signage was unveiled for the Doncaster Rovers game, with fans urged to bring along their own flags to display.
It all helped build an impressive atmosphere for the Good Friday clash and it won praise from Jack Ross.
Sunderland’s support is recognised around the world, the impressive scenes in Covent Garden and Trafalgar Square before the Checkatrade Trophy final an example of that.
And the support from the stands - in particular the Roker End - was evident against Doncaster, with constant singing throughout creating a rousing atmosphere.
To play for a club the size of Sunderland brings its own pressure but Ross has praised the Sunderland support and the impact they had.
Ross said: “To play for this club all the former players will tell you, you've got to be strong and really trust in what you can do individually and what you’re asked to do as a team.
“We had to be strong character-wise because of the way we wanted to play the game [against Doncaster Rovers].
“The energy the crowd gives you can't be underestimated.
“You can point to the challenge of the expectation but equally you can point to how much help you get from it as well because the atmosphere in the stadium was really, really good.”
And the fanbase also won praise from former striker Stephen Elliott, who said the players must have been inspired by the scenes as they headed out onto the pitch.
Elliott tweeted: “This in the third tier. Amazing support for this club. Proper goosebumps material. I’ve no doubt running out to these scenes inspired the lads.”