The Black Cats kicked off their first season back in the second tier with a home game against Coventry City where both teams came away with a point after a 1-1 result.
Alex Neil is aiming for his side to retain their place in the Championship this year whilst also trying to push as high up the table as possible.
However, midfielder Alex Pritchard has also warned that it won’t be an easy season.
The 29-year-old has played in the Championship throughout his career for a number of teams as well as having reached the top flight on numerous occasions and speaking to Sky Sports (via The Northern Echo), he said: “This club is a massive club but you’ve got to realise where you are at this moment in time.
“Sunderland is a massive club. I’ve been in the Premier League for god knows how many years but then I go back to that we’ve been in League One for four years and this is the first time back in the Championship.
“Loads of new players and loads that haven’t played Championship level so you’ve got to stick by us. It’s going to be a difficult season. Last year, we had big ups and downs, we’re going to have the same this year.
“We’ve just got to stick together. The fans have got to stick with us and we’ll give it our all.”
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Sunderland have a good squad and a highly experienced manager so it comes as no surprise that their standards for the season are high.
However, as Pritchard points out, there are members of the squad who haven’t competed in the second tier of football yet meaning it could take some adjustment for them.
Furthermore, after four years in League One, it’s always going to be a struggle to then adapt to another league.
It’s not to say that the Black Cats will have a poor season but the midfielder is right to be realistic about the fact they will probably experience more lows than they did last season and it’s about how the side deal with those points that could make their season.