Nectarios Triantis explains why Sunderland signed him and how he was prepared for first Championship start

Nectarios Triantis made his first Championship appearance for Sunderland during the side's 3-1 win over Birmingham City.

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Nectarios Triantis says he’s benefitted from playing for Sunderland’s under-21s side this season as he gained valuable game time while waiting for his first Championship start.

The 20-year-old defender was handed his first league appearance for the Black Cats during their 3-1 win over Birmingham, nearly five months after his move to Wearside from A-League club Central Coast Mariners.

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Since his summer transfer, Triantis has also made four league appearances for Sunderland’s under-21s side, while waiting for his opportunity at first-team level. 

“The 21s games aren’t a bad standard but those games are more so that you are ready for these kinds of things,” Triantis told the Echo after the Birmingham match. ”I have good 21s games under my belt so I was game fit, game ready and ready to go. Having those minutes under your belt means you can go and get that late call-up.”

When recruiting players over the summer, Sunderland were looking for defenders who were comfortable in possession, with Triantis, who was also on the radars of Crystal Palace and Stoke, demonstrating abilities to play out from the back.

“That is why they’ve brought me in,” Triantis replied when asked about Sunderland’s style and adapting to life in a new country, “I fit their style and you could see the passes I was playing when we played out from the back, it just goes to show how we’ve been coached so far. Everything is just a bit of a change as you can imagine coming all the way from across the world. It’s been a good change.”