Pre-season, kit launch & transfer window; the summer milestones once Donald gets in at Sunderland

It's going to be a busy summer for Sunderland's new owners, assuming Stewart Donald's takeover is ra

by Brandon_Rawlin Sunday, 13 May 2018 12:58 PM Comments
It's going to be a busy summer for Sunderland's new owners, assuming Stewart Donald's takeover is ratified by the EFL in the coming weeks. 


The confirmation of Stewart Donald and the consortium he's heading up may be days or weeks away yet, but once the new owner is ensconced in his new role at Sunderland AFC, his team are going to have a whole load to do this summer. 

So, what happens when this close season?

The transfer window

This year, the transfer window opens next Thursday, the 17th May. No doubt there'll be a queue of Sunderland players already itching to see the back of the Stadium of Light as soon as they can. 

With potentially no manager installed during the opening days of the transfer window once again, Sunderland could find themselves on the back foot for yet another crucial summer of activity. 

The window closes on Thursday August 9th though loan signings can still be made until the 31st August. 

2018/19 fixtures

Fixtures for the Black Cats campaign in League One are announced on Thursday June 21st, at 9am. 

Which teams you're looking forward to Sunderland facing in the third tier is probably a matter of personal choice with a boat load of fresh places to visit and sides we haven't played much down the years making up League One. 

A trip to Blackpool should make for a fun weekend and an August fixture would be a bonus for that visit to the seaside resort. 

The likes of Doncaster and Bradford are relatively short hops whilst the conclusion of the League Two play-offs in a fortnight will either throw up a trip to Lincoln, Notts County, Exeter or Coventry.  

Pre-season training

Who knows who will turn up at pre-season training once Sunderland's players reassemble to commence preparations for League One. 

Some first team squad members will have left early in the transfer window, but there's a good chance a fair few will still be with the club and contractually obliged to report for medical testing and fitness work once the team get back together. 

Typically, that reporting for duty occurs during the last week of June or first week in July. It'll probably be late June. Chris Coleman had already confirmed the club will embark on a week-long training camp somewhere in Europe. 

Pre-season games

The first pre-season fixture usually takes place within a week or so of the players returning from whatever training camp they've been at. The first couple of weeks in July should see the Lads back in action. 

It'll be too late for Sunderland's new manager to make much in the way of changes to the pre-season programme. Chris Coleman had already indicated the fixtures this summer will be against a mixture of domestic opponents, with perhaps just one at the Stadium of Light. 

The big kick-off

The weekend of August 4th is when League One kicks off. It concludes, hopefully with a glorious promotion party, on May 4th 2019. 

Kit launch

Few Sunderland fans will mourn the back of last season's horror kit. The Black Cats tend to launch their home shirt during the first couple of weeks in June with the away kit a few weeks later. 

It can only be an improvement on the monstrosity adorning the Championship campaign, and we can only hope that whoever was chosen to approve that one has been removed from the responsibility given their total lack of taste.