Ex-Boro boy previews cup clash.
Lee Cattermole can’t wait to face former club Middlesbrough after missing both games between the two clubs last season.
The Wear-Tees rivals clashed twice in the FA Cup with Budweiser in 2011-12, with Sunderland eventually prevailing in a highly-charged replay at the Riverside Stadium.
Cattermole, who came through the youth system on Teesside and later captained the club, was all set to face his former employers only to pick up an injury on the eve of the first tie.
Fast forward and the Sunderland skipper is in line to take on Boro tomorrow having returned from a three-match ban at the weekend.
The two sides meet again in the Capital One Cup at the Stadium of Light and Cattermole says the competition is high on the Black Cats’ list of priorities this season.
“The gaffer is keen on the cups and doesn’t take them lightly,” he said. “Look at the teams we put out against Morecambe and MK Dons.
“We’re looking to progress and this is a great chance to pick up some silverware.
“I remember the draw [for the FA Cup] being announced last season after we’d beaten Peterborough, and I was happier than anyone that we drew Middlesbrough.
“But I pulled my hamstring on the Friday before the game, which was devastating. I was playing really well at the time and was really looking forward to the game.
“It’s a great game for me and my family as well.”
Boro are going well in the Npower Championship and sit third in the division following last Saturday’s 2-1 home win over Bolton Wanderers.
Tony Mowbray’s side have won each of their last four games and Cattermole is hoping they can seal promotion at the end of the season.
“They have got some good, experienced players and have brought in the likes of Woody [Jonathan Woodgate] and Grant Leadbitter, while Stuart Parnaby has gone back there,” he said.
“Boro have a good squad and I’d love them to get back into the Barclays Premier League. It would be great for the region.”