After being promoted from League One with Wigan just last season, Reece James is hoping he can do the same with Sunderland this term, although the left back will need to get fit first! James said: “I’ve won the league twice, in both the seasons I’ve played in it. That counts for quite a lot. This club should never be at this level, regardless of anything else. It’s our job now to get us out of the position we find ourselves in. Hopefully we can do that this season. When I left Manchester United there were options for me in the Championship but Wigan had gone down to League One, a bit similar to the situation Sunderland are in now. I wanted to take the opportunity to be a part of something and it worked really well, it was just unfortunate I had the injury that didn’t allow me to play in the Championship season. I hope to do that here with Sunderland and progress the club as far as we can. The aim is to get back into the Premier League as quickly as possible. At the time I joined Wigan we were a new squad, a whole new team, and we didn’t start too great, it was tough. I think we were mid-table after about six games but there was a moment where the players got together and said, ‘This is not acceptable, this is a club which should be thriving to go to the top of the league.’ It just kicked on from there and we went on an unbelievable run and after the first ten games I don’t think we ever came out of the top two. That’s what momentum and team spirit can do and that’s what we’re trying to achieve here. That’s the aim. The aim isn’t just to get promoted, it’s to win the league. Teams are there to beat you every game, they look at you as a big club. It’s their FA Cup final every time they play Sunderland, that’s the way teams will look at it. They’ll make it as difficult as possible. We’ll go to some grounds that are very hard to play on - they’re tight, the crowd are on you and I think it’ll be sell-outs wherever we go. It will be difficult, but we’ve got to stand up to the test and I think we’ll have a lot of fans backing us.”

In other news, we are looking to take Jerome Sinclair, from Watford, on a season long loan. The 21 year old forward was at Birmingham last season, but only appeared 7 times and is yet to score a senior goal, but has represented England at u16 and u17 level and was previously at Liverpool as a youth.

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