What’s the biggest game in British football this weekend? Supporters of Rangers and Celtic – Liverpool and Spurs, too – might bristle when they learn it’s the Checkatrade Trophy final. This time last year Jack Ross, below, was homing in on the Championship title with St Mirren and watched his side claim a point in Inverness in front of 700 travelling fans.
Not bad. But somewhat dwarfed by the numbers following his Sunderland side to Wembley tomorrow. Nearly 40,000 will help make up a sell-out crowd of more than 80,000 for the clash with Portsmouth, a record for the competition. It is guaranteed to exceed the attendance at Celtic Park for the Old Firm fixture and the one at Anfield, where Liverpool host Spurs.
As an experience, it is also sure to beat the grisly spectacle in Paisley this afternoon, where Jack’s old side host Dundee in a nerve-ridden relegation six-pointer.