Sunderland Pre-Season: Gateshead to host Tyne and Wear neighbours
Written by Alex Nicholson on 6th July 2023
In the 21/22 season, Gateshead finished on a high as they saved themselves from relegation to the National League North after a fantastic run of form late in the season. However, despite not being completely in a promotion battle, they will not be short of facing big football league clubs. On July 8, Gateshead will play their second pre-season fixture by hosting Sunderland. This will be both teams’ second game of their pre-seasons as the Black Cats are away to South Shields slightly earlier on the same day, at 12:30, three and a half house before Gateshead’s kick off.
This would be the Heed Army’s second game of the pre-season following their 1-0 win over Hebburn Town on July 4, where a few unknown Trialists impressed on their chance to try and sign for the club, as well as Rob Elliot making his first appearance since signing on as a player and as Gateshead’s first ever technical director last August.
This will be Sunderland’s second fixture of not only the pre-season, but also the day after their trip to South Shields to begin their North-East double header. For Sunderland, this could be the chance for new signings Luis Semedo, Nectarios Triantis, Jobe Bellingham or Jenson Seelt to make their debuts at the Gateshead International Stadium.
One week later, Gateshead will also host a UEFA Champion’s League team at the GIS, Newcastle United. This would be the Magpie’s first fixture to kick off their pre-season before they head to Rangers, and then to USA for the Premier League Summer Series. This game could represent the Carabao Cup finalist’s first opportunity to play highly anticipated signing, and the most expensive Italian player of all time, Sandro Tonali, and they could possibly give academy players, like Stanley-born Lewis Miley, a chance to make an impression.
Both the Black Cats and the Magpies have big seasons ahead of them, as Sunderland pursue their hopes of promotion to the Premier League after losing out in the Championship Play-Off Semi-finals to now top-flight team Luton Town. Meanwhile, Newcastle United will be looking to make a large impression as they play against Europe’s finest in the UEFA Champions League.
While Gateshead are often overshadowed by their massive neighbours in Newcastle United and Sunderland due to not being up in the football league with them, these pre-season games could represent a massive opportunity to be recognised alongside them as they help to kickstart their own, and their opposition’s seasons.