Sebastian Larsson has hailed Sunderland fans for following them around the world in preseason.
Many fans have backed Martin O'Neill's men throughout their pre-season programme, clocking up the air miles with games in Korea and Sweden, as well as Hartlepool, Derby County and Leicester.
Larsson told safc.com: "The fans have supported us brilliantly - and they always do.
"We know what we can expect from our fans.
"I'd like to say a big thank you to them and I'm sure they're looking forward to the new season just as much as we are."