The brilliant Jewison Bennette story Sunderland fans will LOVE

There was a surprise for a number of Sunderland fans travelling home from the draw with Preston North End on Saturday evening.

There at the front of the bus was Jewison Bennette, making his own way home with his father who has been at his side since his arrival from Costa Rica.

It was a brilliant image as he posed with a number of young supporters, clearly awestruck by the presence of the 18-year-old who has been such an exciting presence in his opening three Sunderland appearances and who will more than likely play a key role at the World Cup later this year.

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Head Coach Tony Mowbray felt it perfectly summed up the humility that has made Bennette a popular figure already behind the scenes.

Mowbray also noted that it proved just how big a move it is for the Bennette family and why it will be a long-term process to bring him into the team regularly.

Bennette, as well as Abdoullah Ba and Amad Diallo, have more than shown Mowbray enough to be in his thinking for regular minutes all the same.

Mowbray said: "Fantastic, wasn't it?

"Mind, I did feel like saying the legendary players of the past in the North East would all be getting the bus home!

Jewison Bennette. Sunderland V Preston North End. 01-10-22 Picture by FRANK REIDJewison Bennette. Sunderland V Preston North End. 01-10-22 Picture by FRANK REID
Jewison Bennette. Sunderland V Preston North End. 01-10-22 Picture by FRANK REID
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"I thought it was great - he's a lad who is acclimatising and he's got his dad with him. We were at Watford and his dad hadn't arrange his trip home, he had no idea where Watford was! So he came back on the team coach with us - I think it just shows you the reality of a lad who has come half way around the world from Costa Rica to play for us.

"He probably needs to pass his driving test but you can see what a good kid he is, a nice kid who is always smiling around the building.

"He's in a good place, with a World Cup to look forward to. He knows he has to get into this team and he knows it's difficult, because Jack Clarke is in a rich vein of form. We know we can rotate from the bench now, replacing a really good player with a really good player.

"It allows us to build Jewison into the team and hopefully he can become a really big player for us," Mowbray added.

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"I'm bringing these players on because they're talented boys and I see that in training. We spoke at the start about the news from Middlesbrough, I'm a manager and so I need to win games. It's no good for me to give these lads a game but we lose.

"They're involved because they're showing they can skip past people, they can shoot and get us goals. I watch them against our 'first-team' players in training and they're not out of their depth, and that gives you the confidence to play them."

Mowbray has confirmed that he expects PSG loanee Edouard Michut to soon make his full debut for the club.