"BUZZING" Chris Rigg is loving what he hopes will be the first of many pre-seasons at Sunderland - with the teenage midfielder hoping to carry his summer form into the coming Championship campaign.

After scoring the winner at South Shields last week, Rigg was handed a start for Sunderland and scored the opening goal in the weekend win over San Antonio FC in Texas.

Afterwards, impressed boss Tony Mowbray told of how Rigg is "pushing hard for a starting place" for Sunderland, with the teenager firmly in the head coach's plans ahead of the coming season.

It's been quite the summer for Rigg so far, with the 16-year-old signing a two-year scholarship deal with the Black Cats before making a big impression in the early stages of pre-season.

"Hopefully the gaffer and Doddsy (Mike Dodds, first team coach) are impressed and I can carry on into the season with a few goals as well," said Rigg.

"It's great to help the team out. It's been really good this pre-season. It's my first of hopefully many with this club.

"The fans have been great, the lads have been great, the coaches have been great. Hopefully we can kick on, I can't wait for the season to kick off. I'm buzzing."


Rigg made history, becoming Sunderland's youngest ever outfield player when he made his debut against Shrewsbury last season. He made two more FA Cup appearances against Fulham and was named on the bench in the Championship game at Blackpool, regularly training with the first team despite the fact he was still in his final year of school.

He says: "Obviously it's tough just doing my GCSEs and stuff but the lads have been great, honestly absolutely great, but it's a young squad so that has helped massively. I'd like to think I'm not out of place but I just have to keep going

"I just need to do my own thing, not worry about all the comments. I'm there because of me. It's great help (from teammates) but I just need to keep doing what I'm doing."