A TYNEDALE professional footballer returned to the club he grew up at to keep his current side's promotion charge on track.

George Honeyman, who played his junior football at Prudhoe Youth Club, signed for Sunderland at the age of 10, and rose through the ranks at the Wearside side before signing for Hull City in 2019.

Saturday evening saw Honeyman's Tigers head to the Stadium of Light for a crunch League One fixture, the second time the midfielder had played in the stadium on the opposing team this season.

And Honeyman certainly played his part in helping Hull to a 1-1 draw to keep the side in the top two of the division, named by many of the star player on the evening.

The game was televised live on Sky Sports, and broadcast by BBC Radio Newcastle, with presenter Simon Pryde even stating that Honeyman was 'someone who liked to talk a lot on the pitch'.

City took the lead against the Black Cats but were pegged back, but it was a crucial point for the Humberside outfit who have plans to return to the Championship at the first time of asking following last season's relegation.

It was a quick fire return to Sunderland for the former Prudhoe High School pupil who converted from 12 yards in a penalty shoot out as Hull eliminated Sunderland from the Carabao Cup on the opening day of the season.

Speaking to BBC Radio Humberside, Honeyman described how he didn't enjoy the first return home as there was no crowd - and he knew all about how vocal the Wearside faithful usually were.

He said: “We played Sunderland in the cup at the start of the year and I didn’t know what to expect.

“After the game I didn’t like it. I’m used to playing at the Stadium of Light without fans in in-house games, but it was a weird experience in a competitive game with nobody there.

“When the fixtures came out and it was announced as Boxing Day, me being ever the optimist I was hoping we may have crowds back and Sunderland fans come out in their droves for Boxing Day games as most football fans do. I thought we may have 40,000 fans there. I’d prefer it was a full house.

“I’m not sure it is an advantage, it can work both ways. We’re all used to empty seats now."

He added: “If someone told you that you would play your whole career like this it definitely doesn’t have the same appeal. It’s what you dream of, playing in front of tens of thousands of fans and scoring a last minute winner."