Hoping to extend their unbeaten Premier League run to five games, Sunderland take on a side very much out-of-form, in the shape of Aston Villa.
Gustavo Poyet will be looking for his team to take the momentum from their late comeback at Cardiff City on Saturday into this game, with the Black Cats desperately in need of some success at home, where they have won just twice in the league all season. Sunderland showed great character in South Wales in a game which looked beyond them, and the result demonstrated the improvement that has been made under Poyet.
Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert is aiming to add more experience to his squad during the transfer window, as he knows their form must pick up if they are to avoid being dragged perilously towards the relegation zone. Two home games in three days yielded just one point, which was also not a cause for optimism as they rarely threatened to score in either match.
Sunderland defender Wes Brown serves the final game of a three match ban, although the home side do hope that Adam Johnson and Fabio Borini could play a part after illness.
Ciaran Clark misses out for Villa after picking up his fifth booking of the season on Saturday, so Lambert will be hoping that Ron Vlaar can recover from injury in time to play.
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