U23 Preview: Youngsters return to Eppleton for Villa

Sunderland Under-23s return to action on Monday following 17 days without a Premier League 2 match, taking on Aston Villa at Eppleton (KO 7pm).


The young Lads’ last outing took them to Norwich City where they defended well to earn a 1-1 draw, with Caden Kelly’s early goal earning a lead.


Two games at Eppleton plus the season finale at St. Mary’s against Southampton now remain for Michael Proctor’s young charges.


Proctor is expected to have a near-fully fit squad available which is likely to again include a number of Under-18 scholars who have regularly impressed having made the step up throughout the season, with several more senior U23 players gaining experience out on loan.


Nathan Newall is expected to miss out through injury, whilst Kelly could once again lead the line up top, particularly after the departure of Benji Kimpioka to his Swedish homeland.


The young Lads currently sit 13th in the PL2 Division 2 table, looking to potentially achieve a healthier finish between now and May’s season finale. Opponents Aston Villa slot in at 10th, ahead by eight points, but have won just one of their last seven – a recent run which could give the Lads some encouragement, as well as the reverse fixture at Bodymoor Heath back in October. An excellent comeback saw Sunderland win 3-2 in the West Midlands, via Will Harris’ second-half hat-trick.


Tickets for Monday night’s contest are available to purchase online by clicking here, at a cost of £3 for adults and £1 for concessions. Please be reminded that Eppleton is a cashless venue if paying for entry at Turnstile 1, open on the night.


Social media coverage will take place following the conclusion of the first-team coverage at Plymouth Argyle, via the club’s official Twitter account, @SunderlandAFC

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