Liam Miller is using Sunderland's tour of Ireland to stake a first team claim.
With Roy Keane bringing in Kieran Richardson and Dickson Etuhu over the summer, Sunderland now have seven players competing for two places in central midfield - but Miller is determined to seize his chance to impress.
He said: "I am looking forward to playing at home but I am looking forward even more to trying to give a good account of myself.
"The competition for places in midfield is intense at the club and it is up to everyone to show what they can do when they are given a chance.
"Everyone is looking to stake their claim in the side at the moment and I am no different."