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#FestiveFavourites - Sunderland

We profile the five players who our in-house social media team have selected to make up the iconic Sunderland side from the 1999/2000 season.

Sunderland (1999/2000)

Under the stewardship of Peter Reid, Sunderland returned to the Premier League in emphatic style, following up their promotion from Division One, a season in which they accumulated 105 points, by finishing seventh in the top-flight. 

The clinical pairing of Niall Quinn and Kevin Phillips inspired them to big victories over Derby County, Bradford City and Chelsea, while their triumph over local rivals Newcastle United famously prompted the resignation of Ruud Gullit. 

Thomas Sørensen (GK)

Recommended to the club by Peter Schmeichel, Thomas Sørensen arrived at the Stadium of Light as an unknown quantity but departed Wearside as a firm fan-favourite. 

Keeping a club-record 29 clean sheets in Sunderland’s promotion season, Sørensen proved invaluable back in the top-flight as the Black Cats narrowly missed out on European qualification.

Michael Gray (DF)

Michael Gray broke into the Sunderland first-team shortly after his 18th birthday and went on to make over 400 appearances for the Black Cats. 

While his form didn’t earn a place in England’s Euro 2000 squad, he still enjoyed a tremendous campaign and was an ever-present in the success of Peter Reid’s side.

Nicky Summerbee (MF)

Signed from Manchester City in a swap deal involving Craig Russell, Nicky Summerbee’s partnership down the right-flank with full-back Chris Makin was integral to one of the most successful periods in Sunderland’s recent history. 

Providing the ammunition for Niall Quinn and Kevin Phillips, Summerbee displayed his talents on the Premier League stage – even though he didn’t feature consistently following an altercation with Peter Reid.

Kevin Phillips (FW)

The only Englishman in history to have won the prestigious European Golden Shoe, Kevin Phillips netted an astonishing 30 league goals during the 1999/2000 season! 

The former England international was a ruthless finisher who built a formidable ‘little and large’ partnership with Niall Quinn.

Niall Quinn (FW)

Niall Quinn’s partnership with Kevin Phillips produced 194 goals across six years - 44 of them coming in the 1999-00 season. 

Idolised by the Stadium of Light faithful, Quinn was the focal point of Sunderland’s attack, with his capture in 1996, a then club record fee of £1.3m, proving an absolute bargain.

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