Martin O’Neill can’t wait for SAFC dugout debut

Dated: 03/12/2011'Former Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill is unveiled as the new manager of Sunderland Football Club today (Sat). ''''' #NorthNewsAndPictures/2daymedia
Dated: 03/12/2011'Former Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill is unveiled as the new manager of Sunderland Football Club today (Sat). ''''' #NorthNewsAndPictures/2daymedia

NEW Sunderland manager Martin O’Neill can hardly wait to lead his team out at a “rocking” Stadium of Light on Sunday, when fellow strugglers Blackburn are the visitors.

The Northern Irishman was confirmed as Steve Bruce’s successor on Saturday and officially took charge yesterday, but will meet the majority of his squad for the first time at today’s training session before being unveiled to the media this afternoon.

He is relishing the opportunity and said: “When the Stadium of Light is rocking it really is intimidating for other teams coming up.

“I have managed on a number of occasions against Sunderland, in particular when I was in charge of Leicester for the League Cup semi-final in 1999.

“Sunderland at that stage had a really strong side.

“We did well to win the game; they gave us a torrid time and could have easily have gone through.

“I think the move from Roker Park to the Stadium of Light was done well and the club have settled in.

“The lights shining at night make the place a bit special. In recent times I have been up with Aston Villa and it’s still an intimidating place; a great place if you can win your games.”

FULL STORY IN TUESDAY’S MAIL ...