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Roker Round-up: Pantilimon's Tough Start; Phillips Looking Forward

Our round-up of the latest newspaper headlines hitting the local sports pages today.

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Sunderland Echo

Costel Pantilimon admits it was challenging to start the season as second-choice goalkeeper behind Vito Mannone.

The Romanian has returned to training at the Academy of Light after the international break ready to enjoy a consistent run in the team, having been made to bide his time for an opportunity to shine.

Chronicle

Kevin Phillips looking forward to the meeting between current club Leicester City and old friends Sunderland on Saturday afternoon.

Former Black Cats striker Kevin Phillips comes up against his former team in the role of coach for the very first time in what he believes will be a very special occasion.

Northern Echo

Trio return to full training for Sunderland.

Sunderland boss Gus Poyet has been handed a massive fitness boost with confirmation of Steven Fletcher's availability ahead of Saturday's meeting with Leicester City, plus the return to full training of South American pair Ricky Alvarez and Sebastian Coates.