Sunderland have endured more than their fair share of ups and downs since the turn of the millennium.
After spending much of the nineties between the top two tiers of English football, the Wearsiders enjoyed a sustained period of success in the 00s as they established themselves as a regular fixture in the Premier League.
But for every up there’s a down as the club suffered relegation to the Championship in 2017, before facing another blow by dropping into League One the following season.
While the Black Cats are looking to get themselves back to where they belong, it’s a good chance to reflect on some of the high profile names that have played at the Stadium Of Light.
There’s been plenty of top players at the club during those 20 years, and in a new series we take a look at the best Sunderland XI to turn out since the turn of the Millennium.
This edition features the men between the sticks as we look at the FOUR contenders to make it into our side.
Sunderland’s first choice goalkeeper between 1998 and 2003, Sorensen made quite an impact during his time in Wearside.
Recommended by Peter Schmeichel, the Danish stopper helped Sunderland to consecutive 7th place finishes in the top flight.
Add into that his penalty save against Alan Shearer and it’s easy to see why he was just so popular.
Arriving in the summer of 2010, Mignolet was tasked with challenging Craig Gordon for the number one jersey.
After a patient start to his time at the Stadium Of Light, the Belgian established himself as the first choice stopper and one of the best goalkeepers outside of the top six in the Premier League.
Three years and almost 100 appearances later Mignolet completed a move to Liverpool.
Perhaps not the best goalkeeper to play for Sunderland, but certainly a cult hero.
Mannone struggled to keep hold of the number one jersey during his time at the Stadium Of Light but enjoyed some big moments in it, including a double penalty save against Manchester United to see them through to the Capital One Cup final.
A winner of the supporters’ player of the year award in 2014, the Italian will certainly be fondly remembered on Wearside.
The most recent example of local boy done good.
The Washington-born stopper came through the Sunderland academy set-up, and following a string of loan spells, established himself as the club’s first choice stopper.
Pickford enjoyed 18 months in the Sunderland first team before moving to Everton – a spell which would see him nominated for the PFA Young Player Of The Year award and lead to an England call.
Who would you pick as Sunderland’s best goalkeeper of the Millennium? Have your say!