Premier League Preview and Prediction: Manchester City vs Sunderland

Competition: Premier League – Manchester City vs. Sunderland

Venue: Etihad Stadium – Saturday, August 13 – 17:30 BST (12:30 ET)

Match Odds: Man City 1/4 – Draw 19/4 – Sunderland 11/1

Match Preview

Manchester City kick off their 2016/17 Premier League campaign and new era under manager Pep Guardiola at home against Sunderland on Saturday evening.

It’s certainly an exciting time to be a City fan and they will be expecting their side to get off to a winning start here. Fans will be demanding much more than last seasons finish of 4th, they scraped into a Champions League playoff place and given Guardiola’s winning mentality, that would be a complete failure this time around.

Guardiola has made some big money signings throughout the summer transfer window and he will be expecting the new additions, along with the quality in the current squad, to make a strong challenge to win the Premier League.

Manchester City have a strong home record against Sunderland. They have won 11 of the last 13 meetings between the sides in all competitions. And if previous results are anything to go by we could be in for a goal-fest here, as City have scored at least three goals against Sunderland in seven of their last eight home meetings.

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Sunderland will be looking to avoid another relegation battle this season and the club have replaced Sam Allardyce with David Moyes. It is a good appointment for the club, as despite his struggles at Manchester United, Moyes has a wealth of Premier League experience.

The Black Cats stayed up by two points at the end of last season, thanks to the guidance of Allardyce, and it is now time for them to try and push to the next level. A mid-table finish will be an achievable target if Sunderland can iron out their defensive issues that nearly cost them last season.

Moyes has just started to make some summer signings, while some long-term servants have departed the club. There is quality in the Sunderland side, but they have to build a team around a core of players to prove tougher opposition this season.

Sunderland couldn’t have had it much more difficult in their opening game. The buzz around City will be a huge task for them to deal with, but if they can take anything away from their opening weekend fixture confidence will be sky-high. This will be an interesting tie to watch.

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Team News

Manchester City have added the likes of Ilkay Gundogan (£21m), Nolito (£13.8m), Leroy Sane (£37m) and most recently John Stones (£47.5m) to their squad. Guardiola already has some selection headaches as Gundogan, Sane and captain Vincent Kompany are unlikely to feature until September through injuries. Stones has a huge task ahead of him to step up to the mark and fill in for Kompany in the heart of the City defence. We can expect Guardiola to setup with a 4-2-3-1 formation, with Sergio Aguero leading the line. Nolito could make his debut out on the left flank, while David Silva is likley to start in the number ten role. Kevin De Bruyne will more than likely start on the right. So far City have only seen two players depart, goalkeeper Richard Wright and Martin Demichelis are their completed outs.

Sunderland have released Wes Brown, Steve Harper and Danny Graham ahead of this season. Their completed ins are former United players Donald Love and Paddy McNair. David Moyes must utilise Jermaine Defoe and build a team to feed their frontman. He netted 15 goals in 33 appearances last season and if they can supply him he will be able to cause opposition defenders headaches like he has done his whole career. There are some concerns about Defoe’s fitness as well as Sebastian Larsson, Jan Kirchhoff and Billy Jones, all four players will be racing to get fit for their opener.

Key Points

Manchester City’s last five: N/A

Sunderland’s last five: N/A

Key Stat: Guardiola saw his Bayern side lose just twice last season, once at home and once away, and they won 15 of their 17 home games. If that is anything to go by we could expect City to become a formidable force at home this season.

Key Player: Sergio Aguero – The obvious choice but Aguero is so integral to City. If Guardiola can get his squad playing his style, Aguero will score for fun. The Argentine goal-machine is so deadly and he will be relishing the battle to win the golden boot this season and fire City to silverware.

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Score Prediction

Manchester City 3-0 Sunderland – City to start off with a bang. This is going to be a very difficult task for Sunderland. While many people have tipped Guardiola to find the Premier League very difficult to adapt to, he will have his side ready to go here. Sunderland will be pleased to get one of the toughest places to visit out of the way so early on.

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Premier League Preview and Prediction: Sunderland vs Manchester United

Competition: Premier League – Sunderland vs. Manchester United 

Venue: Stadium of Light – Saturday, February 13 – 12:45 GMT (07:45 ET)

Match Odds: Sunderland 4/1 – Draw 5/2 – Manchester United 3/4

Match Preview

Sunderland host Manchester United in the Saturday afternoon Premier League kickoff this weekend in a hugely important game for both sides, for opposite reasons.

Sunderland are still four points off safety and come into the game in 19th place. However, Sam Allardyce is still yet to be relegated as a manager and so they have that good omen onside with their survival hopes.

If they are to stay up they will need two major factors to go their way. They need to stop conceding so many goals, as they have the worst defence in the league. And Jermaine Defoe needs to score the goals to keep them up as he is their most lethal attacker.

Sunderland’s Premier League record: P25 – W5 – D5 – L15

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Defoe’s late goal at Anfield last week earned Sunderland a point but they need more than that in upcoming games with just 13 fixtures to play.

Manchester United are at a crisis themselves. Simply put, Louis Van Gaal has to make the top four if he has any hope of keeping his job past the summer.

They are struggling to gain enough form to challenge the current top four and they are still six points off their goal, and more worryingly 12 points off the top.

Manchester United’s Premier League record: P25 – W11 – D8 – L6

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As it stands, United are desperate for huge results and missing out on the win against Chelsea in the dying minutes last weekend could well prove crucial come the end of the season.

The reverse fixture ended 3-0 to United at Old Trafford back in September but that seems a long time ago now and this game should be a lot tighter.

Team News

Sunderland may be without Jermaine Defoe, Fabio Borini and Billy Jones who all have minor niggles. Younes Kaboul, Duncan Watmore, Jermaine Lens, Adam Matthews and Sebastien Larsson are all out. Adam Johnson has been sacked by the club.

Manchester United will be without Ashley Young, Adnan Januzaj, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Marcos Rojo, Antonio Valencia and Luke Shaw through injury.

Key Points

Sunderland’s last five: W/L/D/L/D

Manchester United’s last five: D/W/L/W/D

Key Stat: Sunderland haven’t won at home in the Premier League to Manchester United since March 1997.

Key Player: Wayne Rooney – The England captain is under immense pressure due to the form of Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy and his Euro 2016 starting berth is not guaranteed. He is still a huge factor in the United attack and has found his goalscoring form again lately. Expect him to be a threat from the outset.

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Score Prediction

Sunderland 0-2 Manchester United – Manchester United have regained their attacking spark recently and were minutes away from three vital points at Stamford Bridge a week ago. Sunderland need points just as much but will find it difficult to open a United defence which is fortified by the magnificent David De Gea.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Tottenham vs Sunderland

Competition: Premier League – Tottenham Hotspur vs. Sunderland

Venue: White Hart Lane – Saturday, January 16 – 12:45 GMT (07:45 ET)

Match Odds: Spurs 30/100 – Draw 17/4 – Sunderland 9/1

Match Preview

Tottenham take on Sunderland in this Saturday’s early Premier League kickoff in a clash between two sides fighting for objectives at opposite ends of the table.

Spurs are fighting for a place in the top four, while the Black Cats are battling for survival. Tottenham still occupy fourth spot, despite their disappointing 1-0 defeat at home to Leicester on Wednesday night, and need to pick back up here as they look to win for the first time in 2016.

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Mauricio Pochettino’s side enjoyed an excellent Christmas run as they won three straight games to end 2015. But the new year hasn’t been kind to Spurs, as they have not won in three now. Wednesday night’s defeat to Leicester was just their third of the campaign and a response on Saturday is much needed.

That might be tricky against a Sunderland side that have won back-to-back Premier League games coming into this tie. They beat relegation rivals Swansea 4-2 on Wednesday and will be more confident of staying up now.

They are now just one point adrift of safety but will have to beat Spurs for the first time since 2010 to move out of the bottom three, for a couple of hours at least.

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The reverse fixture at the Stadium of Light ended 1-0 to Spurs, with a late Ryan Mason goal sealing the victory for the Lilywhites on that occasion.

Team News

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino will be pleased to have seen Moussa Dembele return to action against Leicester on Wednesday and the Belgian could start in place of Tom Carroll here. Clinton N’Jie remains out, while Ryan Mason and Alex Pritchard are still doubtful and are unlikely to make the squad.

Sunderland boss Sam Allardyce is unlikely to make any changes to the side that won 4-2 at Swansea on Wednesday night. DeAndre Yedlin won’t face his parent club so he is ineligible, while former Spurs defender Younes Kaboul remains sidelines along with Sebastian Larsson and Adam Matthews.

Key Points

Tottenham’s last five: W/W/W/D/L

Sunderland’s last five: L/L/L/W/W

Key Stat: Tottenham have won their last four home games against Sunderland in the Premier League by an aggregate scoreline of 9-2.

Key Player: Moussa Dembele – The Belgian midfielder should make a first start of 2016 here after recovering from a knock. He has been excellent this season and Spurs have not lost a game in which he has started since October.

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Score Prediction

Tottenham 2-1 Sunderland – This might be a tighter game than Spurs would like as Sunderland will arrive at White Hart Lane full of confidence. However, the home side need a victory just as much as the Black Cats and should have the quality to get three points here.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Arsenal vs Sunderland

Competition: Premier League – Arsenal vs. Sunderland

Venue: Emirates Stadium – Wednesday, May 20th – 19:45 BST (14:45 ET)

Match Odds: Arsenal 2/7 – Draw 9/2 – Sunderland 9/1

Match Preview

Arsenal welcome Sunderland to the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday night for the penultimate game of the Premier League season with both sides in need of just one more point to secure very different objectives.

The Gunners are in search of one more point to ensure they finish in third place above Manchester United and avoid the Champions League qualification playoff game, while a point for Sunderland will guarantee their top flight status for another season.

Theo Walcott‘s deflected cross off Tyler Blackett rescued a vital point for Arsenal at Old Trafford on Sunday and kept them two points clear of fourth-placed Manchester United coming into this game-in-hand.

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Arsenal’s fantastic run of eight straight wins has been halted by a run of four games with just one victory (D2, L1), although Arsene Wenger has still done enough to guide his side to a Champions League finish for the 17th consecutive season.

The Gunners have won all but one of their home games against sides in the bottom 11 of the Premier League table this season – a 2-2 draw with Hull City back in October being the only points they’ve dropped against the lower league teams at home.

Sunderland arrive in London having lost just one of their last six games (W3, D2) and their 0-0 draw at home to Leicester last weekend extended their current mini-unbeaten run to four games.

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Despite the good run, Dick Advocaat will know there is still work to do and the final two games are away at Arsenal and Chelsea, so they may be relying on Hull City failing to win against Manchester United on the final day in order for them to survive.

Arsenal won the reverse fixture 2-0 at the Stadium of Light thanks to two goals from Alexis Sanchez and have won the last four meeting between the two sides.

Team News

Arsenal’s Laurent Koscielny will face a late assessment as he is suffering with the flu, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Danny Welbeck, Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Debuchy are all unavailable because of injury.

Sunderland will be without the injured Billy Jones, Jordi Gomez, Wes Brown, Jack Rodwell and Ricardo Alvarez.

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Key Points

Arsenal’s last five: W/D/W/L/D

Sunderland’s last five: L/D/W/W/D

Key Stat: Sunderland haven’t won away at Arsenal in the league since November 1983 when they beat the Gunners 2-1 at Highbury.

Key Player: Aaron Ramsey – The Welshman doesn’t stop running and his work-rate can’t be faulted even though he’s playing out of position on the right side of midfield.

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Score Prediction

Arsenal 2-1 Sunderland – The Gunners’ home advantage will help them just edge past the Black Cats who will go into the final day with it all to play for.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Newcastle United vs. Sunderland

Sunday’s afternoon kickoff sees the return of the Tyne-Wear derby as St. James’ Park will see Newcastle plays host to an out of form Sunderland side.

Alan Pardew’s Magpies will be the favourites heading into this one, as they lay eighth in the table, seven places higher and seven points better off than the fifteenth-placed Black Cats.

This is a fixture which usually brings high drama, and this one looks set to be another classic installment despite the fact that this is hardly the best teams these two clubs have fielded in the Premier League era.

The Magpies come into the tie with a resurgence of form having won their last four at home, including the victory which ended Chelsea’s hopes of an unbeaten season two weeks ago.

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They have however, had less success against their rivals recently, having not beaten Sunderland since August 2011.

However, Gus Poyet’s men are without a win in their last six Premier League games, though they have drawn five of them.

Sunderland interestingly, has a total of ten draws this term, having only played sixteen times so far. So their form isn’t terrible but they need to start turning draws into wins and Sunday would be a perfect time to do so.

They have won the last three Tyne-Wear derby games, and so Gus Poyet has reason for optimism heading into this one.

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You’d be a brave man to predict this one, but whatever the result, we’re sure this will be an entertaining Christmas treat for all who watch.

Score Prediction: Newcastle United 1 – 1 Sunderland

Key Player: Ayoze Perez – whether Pardew decides to play him up top or plays him wide left of a front three, Perez will work tirelessly for the team. And he’s been known to score vital goals so far this year.