Defeat for Black Cats in final friendly.
Leicester City 1 Sunderland 0
Andrew Lisgo at the King Power Stadium
Martin O'Neill's return to former club Leicester City ended in a 1-0 defeat for the Black Cats in their final friendly ahead of the new campaign.
The Sunderland manager made a host of changes from the midweek game against Derby County as Sunderland prepared for the Barclays Premier League with a training camp in the Midlands.
The only game of the game came from City substitute Tom Parkes in the second half when the ball fell to him from a corner and was eventually scrambled in.
O'Neill continued to field most of his squad at some point, giving more first team action to a number of youngsters.
The Black Cats' first chance of the game fell to Fraizer Campbell, who headed Craig Gardner's cross over from eight yards early on.
The home side made the bright start to the game with quick runs and attacks on Keiren Westwood's goal but the Sunderland stopper wasn't called into action until the 19th minute.
A Jamie Vardy through ball found Jermaine Beckford, whose effort from the left-hand side of the box took a deflection off Gardner and was palmed away by Westwood.
Just moments later and the home fans thought they had taken the lead when a Ben Marshall free-kick from 25 yards out skimmed the top of the netting.
The Foxes continued to attack and came close again on 23 minutes. Left-back Paul Konchesky whipped in a powerful cross which was met by Vardy but his headed effort went over the bar.
The Black Cats called Kasper Schmeichel into action on 38 minutes with a Gardner free-kick on the edge of the box. Jack Colback was brought down on the left hand side of the box and Gardner's curling effort was punched away to safety.
Just moments later and Leicester came close as Ritchie De Laet saw his close-range header cleared off the line by Kieran Richardson.
O'Neill made a number of changes at the break with Sebastian Larsson, David Meyler and Carlos Cuellar replacing Ahmed Elmohamady, Matt Kilgallon and Titus Bramble.
The home side also made a host of changes at the break with former Sunderland striker Martyn Waghorn one of five substitutes called into action by Foxes manager Nigel Pearson.
Sunderland started the second half brightly and it was James McClean who tested Schmeichel first. The ball fell to the Irish winger on 55 minutes after a scramble in the box but his effort was easily claimed by the Leicester keeper.
At the other end Westwood continued to keep the score level producing another fine stop. Leicester substitute Anthony Knockaert cut in from the right wing and hit a low shot which was punched out by the goalkeeper before he tipped a long-range strike from Marshall over the bar just moments later.
But it was the home side who opened the scoring thanks to substitute Parkes on 72 minutes. Following a Leicester corner, the ball fell to the defender inside the six-yard box and he scrambled a shot over the line.
With fifteen minutes remaining, O'Neill made three further changes with youngsters Ryan Noble, John Egan and Blair Adams replacing Campbell, John O'Shea and Richardson.
The Black Cats almost levelled with ten minutes to go through a Seb Larsson free-kick. The Swede's delivery from 30 yards out bounced through the crowded box and hit the crossbar before the rebound fell to McClean whose header was cleared off the line.
Sunderland's players and supporters thought the ball had crossed into the goal only for the officials to wave play on.
Sunderland continued to press for an equalizer in the final ten minutes, with Schmeichel keeping out an effort from Jack Colback before sub Adams fired a shot wide in the final moments.
Sunderland: Westwood, Gardner, O'Shea (Egan, 75), Kilgallon (Meyler,46), Bramble (Cuellar, 46), Cattermole (Knott, 80), Elmohamady (Larsson, 46), Colback, Campbell (Noble, 75), Richardson (Adams, 75), McClean.
Subs Not Used: Mignolet.