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Sunderland midfielder offers open and honest reflection on 2021/22 ahead of Coventry City clash

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Sunderland midfielder Luke O’Nien has reflected on what he calls a ‘special day’ at Wembley back in May ahead of the Black Cats’ Championship opener tomorrow.

The club will face Coventry City in their second-tier opener tomorrow lunchtime having won promotion via the League One play-offs at the end of last season.

The Black Cats were 2-0 victors over Wycombe Wanderers on that day a few months back, and O’Nien admits there was a lot of emotions involved.

“I think when that whistle went there were tears and a lot of emotion, not just me but for a lot of people,” he said, via the Sunderland Echo.

“It was special because I have wanted to achieve that for such a long time and to finally do it meant the world.”

“To share it with everyone in the North East who has been waiting patiently for that, it was a very special day. Being back in the North East since and seeing the buzz is special to be a part of and we have to work for some more now.”

It was not a campaign without its dark moments, though, O’Nien admits.

The 27-year-old missed out on league action from the end of November until mid-March with a shoulder injury and he says he learned a lot about himself during that time.

[freshpress-quiz id=”673469″ title=”Quiz: Can you remember the score the last time Sunderland played at these 26 stadiums?”

“It was difficult, it teaches you a lot about yourself and I had wonderful people around me helping me through it,” he explained.

“I only voiced it just to connect with people who are going through it, youngsters. I have a little girl now so I think I have to be a role model for her. For any people going through that sort of stuff I did it just to connect with them and help them through that as well.

“I’m glad to come through it and getting promotion was easily the best moment of my footballing life so far.

“I’ve got that medal now but equally that’s in the past and we have to work for more, moving the club and moving each individual forward.”

Kick off at the Stadium of Light against the Sky Blues is set for 12pm UK time.

The match will be broadcast live on Sky Sports in the United Kingdom.

The Verdict

It is no wonder Luke O’Nien had an emotional day back at Wembley in May.

Having had a difficult season personally, and been beaten in the final at Wembley before with Championship football on the line, you can imagine the sheer release of emotions upon the final whistle that day.

O’Nien and Sunderland must now look ahead to their Championship opener against Coventry, though.

The Sky Blues are a good Championship side and as such, will provide Sunderland with a very stern assessment of where they are at entering the campaign.


Freelance writer currently covering all things EFL for Football League World

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Sunderland midfielder offers open and honest reflection on 2021/22 ahead of Coventry City clash

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