Ryan Noble

Youngsters' big kick-off

by Stuart Vose

Squad named for Southampton trip.

Sunderland's development squad will play their first game in the new Barclays Under-21 Premier League this afternoon as they take on Southampton.

Kevin Ball's side will face the Saints at the newly-promoted club's Staplewood training ground, with the game kicking off at 2.30pm.

Ball has named a 16-man squad for his first game in charge of the under-21s, including new signings David Ferguson and Wade Joyce who could both make their Sunderland debuts.

Striker Ryan Noble is also included having featured regularly for the first team during pre-season alongside the likes of John Egan and Blair Adams.

James Armstrong, Liam Marrs and Jordan Watson all miss out through injury.

Check safc.com later for a full match report and reaction.

Sunderland (from): Pickford, Dixon, Laing, Adams, Oliver, Egan, Ferguson, Lynch, Knott, Ryan Noble, Laidler, Deacon, Joyce, Mitchell, Callaghan, Gorrin.