Youngsters to head to Holland

by Stuart Vose

Pre-season preparations set to ramp up.

Sunderland's youngsters are heading to Holland as their pre-season preparations ramp up.

The travelling party consists of the club's under-18 side and the trip includes coaching at PSV Eindhoven, a number of friendly games and a tournament.

After jetting to the Continent tomorrow, the young Black Cats will take on NAC Breda on Sunday (August 5) and Roda JC on August 8.

Saturday 11th August will see the youngsters handed a real test in tournament action with 2x 20-minute games scheduled against Wisla Krakow, VVV Venlo and KRC Genk.

The following day they will face Feyenoord and the Chile national team in a similar format, with a potential final taking place the same day.

Craig Liddle will lead the party along with head of coaching Elliott Dickman, who is expecting the trip to be a valuable addition to the youngsters' pre-season plans.

"This trip is a great chance for both our first- and second-years to get two weeks' good training under their belts," Dickman said.

"It's a good chance for them to bond, too, and play some games against difficult opposition.

"They have already played a number of friendlies and playing games abroad is a nice addition.

"Everyone is looking forward to it and there is hard work ahead with the season starting almost as soon as we get back."