Tom Flanagan reveals why Sunderland are already in a better place than last season

Tom Flanagan believes Sunderland are in a better place now than they were last season – as the Black Cats eyes another promotion push.

By Mark Donnelly
Tuesday, 23 July, 2019, 14:15
Tom Flanagan has made a bold pre-season claim

Flanagan, who is entering the final season of his two-year deal at the Stadium of Light, believes that the club will be better-equipped to deal with League One this term – after narrowly missing out on promotion last time around.

Last summer, the Northern Irish international was one of a host of arrivals on Wearside as the Black Cats went through a summer of change both on and off the field.

And while Jack Ross had a skeleton of a squad last term, he has far more healthy numbers at his disposal this summer – which Flanagan believes means the team are streaks ahead of twelve months ago.

“There’s a lot of boys now so we’re able to change the team over the two games,” he said, speaking to safc.com.

“Maybe there wasn’t much competition for places last season during pre-season whereas now we are way beyond where we were then in terms of players, fitness levels and competition for places.”

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The defender was speaking during the club’s pre-season tour to Portugal, which Flanagan feels was certainly of benefit.

“The facilities here are just so good and we would be mad not to come,” he added.

“We’ve worked really hard with double sessions; they’ve got a good gym here too.

“The facilities are just so good, and it makes a nice change from the wind and the rain at the AoL.”