Sunderland began their pre-season campaign with a 3-1 victory at Gateshead FC on Saturday.
Chris Maguire fired the Black Cats ahead inside 20 minutes when he curled a pin-point free-kick into the top corner.
But the Heed soon levelled after Jordan Preston beat the offside trap and fired home.
After the break, substitutes Will Grigg and Josh Scowen both added well-taken strikes to make sure of the win.
Grant Leadbitter captained the side for the first time in over five months, while summer signing Bailey Wright lined-up from the off after signing a permanent deal.
New recruits Aiden O’Brien and Morgan Feeney were both made to wait for their first outing in red and white, as they began on the bench.
Phil Parkinson’s side started the brightest and went close twice inside 10 minutes.
Elliot Embleton weaved his way into the box and fired wide after Chris Maguire saw an effort blocked behind.
The Lads then had Lee Burge to thank for keeping proceedings level when he denied Paul Blackett at full stretch.
Maguire then put Sunderland ahead on 17 minutes when he curled a fine 20-yard free-kick into the top corner.
But Gateshead were level less than five minutes later when Preston capitalised on some miscommunication and slotted home.
After the interval, the Lads squandered two huge opportunities to hit the front again.
First, a trialist met Maguire’s corner and saw his header shave the post, and moments later, Charlie Wyke’s tame effort was held by the Gateshead stopper.
On the hour mark, Parkinson made eight changes with Jack Diamond, Jordan Willis, Lynden Gooch, Max Power, O’Brien, Grigg, Feeney and a trialist taking to the field.
And nine minutes later the Lads were back in front.
Substitutes Diamond and Grigg combined and the latter nodded home from eight yards.
In the 72nd minute, Sunderland had a two-goal cushion when Grigg was again involved to tee up Scowen, who drilled into the corner of the net from distance.
Luke Brown went closest for the Heed with less than 10 minutes to go, but Burge was equal to it as the Lads came out on top in their first pre-season contest.
Gateshead FC: Trialist, Trialist, Trialist, Trialist, Hunter, Nicholson, Langstaff, Trialist, Preston, O’Donnell, Smith
Subs: Greenfield, Guthrie, Olley, Blackett, Brown, Cranston, Trialist
Sunderland: Burge, O’Nien (Power 60), Flanagan (Trialist 45), Leadbitter (Willis 60), Wright (Feeney 60), Mclaughlin (Scowen 60), Maguire (Diamond 60), Dobson (Gooch 60), Wyke (O’Brien 60), Embleton (Neil 38) Hume (Grigg 60)
Subs not used: Patterson, Taylor