Bramble happy with familiar faces
Sunderland new boy Titus Bramble will be surrounded by familiar faces as he prepares to return to the north-east.
The 28-year-old signed a three-year deal on Friday after Wigan accepted the Black Cats' offer of around £1million for his services. He worked under manager Steve Bruce and his assistant, Eric Black, at Wigan, where he also played with midfielder Lee Cattermole, and he was followed through the ranks at first club Ipswich by £10million marksman Darren Bent.
Bramble, who joined his team-mates at their pre-season training camp in Portugal earlier this week as the details of his move were thrashed out, said: "I know the manager, all his backroom staff, I know Catts, I know Benty, so it will be easy to settle in."
He added: "Any time you join a new club, it's exciting, so I just want to get back on the training pitch and play with my new team."
A return to continental action is high on the player's agenda, and he is confident that is not beyond Sunderland as they prepare for the new Barclays Premier League campaign with a top-10 finish the minimum requirement.
Asked about his ambitions for the season, Bramble told SAFC TV: "To become a regular, and for the team it's to improve on last season.
"The signings he [Bruce] is going to make and the players we have here, we are definitely good enough to qualify for Europe.
"It's a great stadium and we have got some very passionate fans - it's better to be playing with them rather than against them."