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Plan your journey for the Wear-Tyne derby

Newcastle's Fabricio Coloccini and Sunderland's Steven Fletcher during the last derby match at St. James' Park, December 21, 2014. Credit: PA

Northumbria Police has issued travel information ahead of the Wear-Tyne derby on Sunday, April 5th.

There are a number of ways that supporters can get to the game, however officers are advising fans to plan their journeys in advance and give themselves extra time.

Newcastle United are running supporters' coaches from St James' Park direct to the Stadium of Light.

Northern Rail will be providing a direct train service specifically for supporters, from Newcastle Central Station to St Peter's. This will leave at 3:02pm. The return service from Sunderland will leave at 6:42pm.

There will be direct Metro services for Newcastle supporters on match day. These services will only stop at Central Station and St Peter's stations and are for Newcastle supporters only. They will leave at 2:39pm and 2:46pm. For the return journey - there are two Metros running direct from St Peter's station to Central Station. These will be at 6.27pm and 6.35pm.

People can also drive to the game, however roads will be busy and there are a number of ongoing roadworks between Sunderland and Newcastle, so police are advising people to leave extra time and plan journeys in advance.

Roads closed on derby day will be - Sheepfolds North and Sheepfolds Road – near to the St Peter’s Metro station and there will be limited parking in Sunderland on the day.

Acting on feedback from supporters we changed the policing plan for December's game in Newcastle, which gave travelling supporters more options about how to travel to the match. There are a range of options for fans to get to the game and the best advice would be to plan ahead and give yourself extra time as it will be a busy Sunday. The coaches are the quickest way to get to and from the game. There are direct metro and train services on the day, but these will be busy. Fans told us that direct trains from Newcastle to Sunderland were something they would like to retain, so this will be available for the coming derby, and in addition the same options and opportunities afforded to Sunderland fans in December will be available for Newcastle fans travelling to Sunderland this time round. Northumbria and British Transport Police officers will be based at Central Station and will not be allowing people who are drunk or are causing trouble to get onto the trains. We would also remind fans that it is an offence to attempt to enter the stadium whilst being under the influence of alcohol."

– Chief Superintendent Steve Neill, Northumbria Police

Advocaat says players need to believe in themselves

New Sunderland Head Coach Dick Advocaat says his players need to believe in themselves if the club is to avoid relegation.

The Dutchman replaced Gus Poyet this week and met the media for the first time this morning (Friday, March 20).

Sunderland are just one point above the premier league relegation zone.

Advocaat thinks his first game in charge, at West Ham tomorrow, will set the tone.


Adam Johnson returns to training with Sunderland

Sunderland winger Adam Johnson has returned to training after the club lifted his suspension.

The 27-year-old midfielder was suspended by the Black Cats earlier this month following his arrest on suspicion of sexual activity with a girl under 16.

He will now be free to resume while the police investigation continues.

The club has issued the following statement:

The club has discussed the current position in detail with both the PFA (Professional Footballers' Association) and Adam's representatives.

In line with those discussions we recognise that the player is entitled to re-commence his duties with the club while the legal process continues. He will therefore return to training.

The club's own investigation cannot continue until the conclusion of the legal process. Sunderland AFC will make no further comment on the matter due to the ongoing police investigation.

– Sunderland AFC

Durham Constabulary have also commented on Sunderland's decision:

Sunderland AFC informed us this morning of their decision, which of course is a matter entirely for the club. The police investigation remains very much live and ongoing and a man remains on bail while enquiries continue.

“We would once again urge those posting on social media to be aware of the effects their comments can have. We accept rumour and speculation may be inevitable, but many of the comments have been distressing to the complainant, her family and people connected with the investigation."

– Durham Constabulary

Johnson has had his police bail extended until April 23rd.

Adam Johnson bail extended

Credit: Nick Potts/PA Wire

The Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson has had his bail date extended by police, who are investigating allegations that he had sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl.

The 27-year-old was arrested at his home in Castle Eden, near Peterlee, on March 2.

He is now due to report back to police in five weeks.

The winger has been suspended by Sunderland pending the outcome of the police investigation.

Advocaat deal - Twitter reaction

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