Sunderland vs Stoke City
Saturday 14th January 2017 | Kick Off 3.00pm
Stadium of Light
SUNDERLAND'S Stadium of Lightopened at the same time as the bet365 Stadiumin 1997 on the former site of the Monkwearmouth Colliery.
Originally built with a capacity of 42,000, it now holds 49,000 spectators following an expansion in 2002.
48,335 crammed in for the clash with Liverpool not long after and this figure still stands as the Club's record attendance at the venue.
Away from football a host of concerts have been held at the stadium with the likes of Oasis, Coldplay, Kings of Leon, Take That, Rihanna and One Direction all performing there.
Two full senior England internationals have also been hosted at the home of Sunderland, with the 2-1 friendly win over Belgium in October 1999 being followed by a 2-0 victory over Turkey in the Euro 2004 qualifiers in April 2003.
Visiting supporters are housed behind one of the goals in the Carling North Stand's Upper Tier.
JOURNEY BY ROAD
188 miles from bet365 Stadium - 3 hours
Head north on the M6 via the A50 and A500.
At Junction 21A join the M62, heading eastbound.
Join the M60 at Junction 12, using the left lane signposted for Leeds and Bolton. Rejoin the M62 at Junction 18 and continue north.
At Junction 29, join the M1 and merge onto the A1 (M) just after Junction 47.
Exit the A1 (M) at Junction 49 to join the A168. Continue north as it changes into the A19 at Thirsk.
Head beyond Middlesbrough on the A19, eventually exiting for the A1018 near Seaham.
Continue on the A1018 across numerous roundabouts to the City Centre, turning right to cross the bridge over the River Wear, where the stadium will be accessible via Millennium Way on the left hand side.
Alternatively, continue on the A1 (M) at Junction 49 to where it splits into the A1 (for Newcastle) and A194 (M) at Washington.
Keep right to join the A194 (M) and then take the first exit to join the A182 from the third exit of the roundabout.
Take the first junction (left) at the next roundabout to join the A1231 and continue east on this road as it becomes Wessington Way.
The stadium will eventually become visible on the right hand side when the road merges into Queens Road. This then becomes Keir Hardie Way which passes alongside the stadium.
*Another alternative is to travel east and then north via the A50 and M1, joining the M18 at Junction 32 and then the A1 (M) at Junction 2, before picking up either of the routes above.
Parking in the immediate areas of the Stadium of Light is very limited. Permit parking schemes apply in some areas and Police parking restrictions will be in place around the stadium with fixed penalty tickets being issued.
Fans are advised to use car parks at St. Mary's (SR1 3AH), Sunniside (SR1 1UL) and The Bridges (SR1 3PZ) as all are just a 10 to 15 minute walk from the stadium. Parking charges apply.
Alternatively, supporters can take advantage of Sunderland's 'Park and Ride' or 'Park and Walk' schemes.
The Park and Ride scheme runs from the Sunderland Enterprise Park on Wessington Way (A1231), which is easily accessible from the A19 and is clearly signposted 'Park and Ride' (SR5 3XG).
A Park and Walk scheme operates from two sites at the University of Sunderland – City Campus on the A183, Chester Road (SR1 3SD) and St. Peter’s (SR6 0AN). Both are clearly signposted. Follow the signs for 'Match Day Parking'.
Sunderland's outdoor Fan Zone features bar and food outlets, local music talent, radio roadshows and a giant screen playing match highlights and classic games.
The area aims to provide a relaxed environment for fans to soak up the matchday atmosphere and meet with fellow supporters.
Visiting fans are welcome in the Fan Zone, which is located outside the East Stand.
The nearby Hilton Garden Inn also welcomes supporters into their bar prior to the game.
Turnstiles open 90 minutes before kick-off. The away turnstiles are 69-72 in the Carling North Stand.
If you require lift access please contact Sunderland AFC in advance. Radios are available on request for supporters with visual impairment.
The Stadium of Light is a no smoking venue, which also applies to the use of E-cigarettes.
ENHANCED SAFETY PROTOCOLS
Sunderland AFC will be rigorously applying the terms and conditions of entry to the Stadium of Light. Regulations in place are to ensure the safety and security of everyone attending matches.
Ground Regulation 6 specifies that they can refuse entry to the stadium to anyone who does not consent to a search. Large bags and rucksacks will not be permitted to be brought in the ground under any circumstances, nor will supporters be permitted to store such items at the stadium. Small bags such as handbags will be allowed, however anyone carrying a bag is advised that it will be searched on entry.
In relation to Ground Regulation 17.2, flasks, containers, bottles, cans and other such items are not permitted in the stadium. Anyone attempting to bring such items into the stadium will have them confiscated. The same protocols apply to the Fan Zone area.
Sunderland are advising supporters to arrive early for the game, allowing additional time to enter the stadium in light of the enhanced safety measures that will be in place.
Travelling to the Stadium of Light on train from Stoke-on-Trent requires multiple connections.
Get to Newcastle via Derby, via Manchester Piccadilly and Huddersfield or via Manchester Piccadilly and York.
From Newcastle Station walk to Newcastle Central and use the Tyne and Wear Metro service, heading heading south to either the Stadium of Light or St. Peters' stations in Sunderland.
When leaving the stadium after the match, supporters heading northbound towards Newcastle must board at the Stadium of Light station.
Check with National Rail Enquiries on 08457 48 49 50 for more information or visit www.nationalrail.co.uk
BBC Radio Newcastle broadcast on 104.4FM whilst Metro Radio are at 97.1FM.