Roy Keane’s Sunderland take on Newcastle United in the North East derby at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.
The Black Cats will be hoping to collect all three points in this derby after only managing to draw their last two games in the Premier League against Arsenal and Fulham, with a win against Newcastle enough to propel Sunderland into the top half of the table in what has been a steady start to the season.
Magpies boss Joe Kinnear takes Newcastle into this crucial derby clash one place off the bottom of the Premiership and without a win since he took over from Toon idol Kevin Keegan. However, Kinnear will be happy with the spirit United have shown in gaining draws in their last two games against Everton and Manchester City and will hope this derby can deliver Newcastle’s first win since August.
Keane is unable to call on Darren Ward (back), but could have striker Kenwyne Jones available after a lengthy spell on the sidelines with a knee injury, while Nyron Nosworthy (Knee) and Martyn Waghorn (knee) are both major doubts for Sunderland.
Kinnear has already revealed that Michael Owen will miss the derby with Sunderland due to a goin strain, while Alan Smith (achilles) and Mark Viduka (achilles) are also still out, with yet another striker Jonas Gutierrez (shoulder) and defender Ignacio Gonzalez (achilles) also doubtful for the trip to the Stadium of Light. Joey Barton is available after his six-match suspension as is Habib Beye, who had his red card against Manchester City overturned.
Sunderland: (from) Gordon, Ferdinand, McCartney, Bardsley, Tainio, Whitehead, Edwards, Malbranque, Cisse, Richardson, Diouf, Miller, Murphy, Collins, Jones, Leadbitter, Yorke, Reid, Chimbonda, Healy, M’Voto, Kavanagh, Hartley, Connolly, Fulop, Dowson, Meyler, Prica, Colgan
Newcastle United: (from) Given, Coloccini, Enrique, Cacapa, Barton, Guthrie, Martins, Duff, Bassong, Harper, N’Zogbia, Gonzalez, Gutierrez, Xisco, Geremi, Beye, Butt, Ameobi, Taylor, Kadar, Edgar, Tozer, LuaLua, Carroll, Krul