Sunderland boss Dick Advocaat has admitted that he is amped up ahead of this weekend’s Tyne-Wear derby and insists his team must not lose against Newcastle.
The experienced Dutch coach has been installed as the new manager at the Stadium of Light, relieving Gus Poyet of his duties, and has been handed the unenviable task of keeping the Black Cats in the top flight.
With Sunderland a point above the drop zone ahead of Sunday’s fixture against their local rivals, Advocaat has insinuated that his team must get something from the game on Wearside.
“Every game from now until the end of the season we have to get points – and the first game is Newcastle,” The Daily Mail quote Advocaat as saying.
“In England, almost every game is like a derby – they’re all real battles. I think, as a footballer, you like those type of games with the atmosphere in the stadium and the fans – away and at home.
“It was something special when we arrived at Celtic, with the [police] horses around the coach. But we all know how special this game will be. We are all looking forward to it.”
Sunderland have a strong recent record against Newcastle, which the home faithful will hope to continue tomorrow afternoon.
Advocaat’s men have 26 points and sit in 17th place ahead of the weekend’s action, with Burnley a mere point behind them in the race for Premier League survival.
Sunderland have not won a Premier League game in their last seven attempts.