Sunderland, who will now be confident of retaining Premier League status, travel to Old Trafford to face a Manchester United side looking to build on their win over Norwich City.
Steven Whitaker’s foul on Danny Welbeck was exactly what Man Utd were crying out for in Ryan Giggs’ first game in charge, as for most of the first half, last season’s champions had once again struggled to create any meaningful opportunities. Wayne Rooney’s successful spot-kick before the break appeared to settle them down, and they were much more convincing in the second period, putting the Canaries to the sword.
Everything went according to plan for Sunderland and Gustavo Poyet on Sunday, as the thrashing of Cardiff City lifted them out of the bottom three and with their fate very much under their control, particularly with a game in hand against West Bromwich Albion to come on Wednesday. Even so, having won at Chelsea and nearly beat Manchester City away, they are more than capable of producing the goods here.
Wayne Rooney is a doubt for this game, meaning Juan Mata could come in for Man Utd after his brace against Norwich. Meanwhile, Robin van Persie could be fit enough for a place on the bench.
The visitors are likely to be without Carlos Cuellar, while goalkeeper Kieren Westwood, midfielder Ki Sung-Yueng and striker Steven Fletcher are set to miss the rest of the season.
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