Writer: Gary Johnson
Date:Friday November 12 2010
Sunderland have managed to come away after the derby day destruction with their head held high after two great results. 4 points from their last six is great form but this could all be blown away if we do not turn up on Sunday.
The stats are horrible for us against Chelsea on home territory. We have conceded 18 goals in the last four trips and Chelsea have the highest shots on target compared to Sunderland having the lowest in the league. Also one bookies has Sunderland at 10/1 to win away from home!
Optimism must be high with Sunderland fans heading to the Bridge based on those stats but we can only try and cause an upset, like we did on Tuesday.
Chelsea, who have lost Ray Wilkins, are not playing fluent football at times and we have to hope they have an off day for a change.
Steve Bruce told the Sunderland Echo:
"Games don`t come much tougher than Chelsea away, especially with the form they`ve been in this season.
"But I`m looking for us to go there and perform and get a bit of pride out of it.
"Everyone is still smarting over the awful derby defeat at Newcastle - me as much as anyone out there - and one good week isn`t going to put that behind us.
"It`s something we have to live with until the next derby - I think it`s something like 64 days and counting - to begin putting it right.
"And even then, if we play well against them, it won`t make up for that 5-1 defeat for many fans.
"But all we can do right now is to go there every game and try to give supporters performances they can take something from.
"It was so important that we got the win over Stoke immediately afterwards and I was pleased with my players for the character they showed that day.
"And then we went to Spurs midweek - a team which finished in a Champions League position last season and who have hammered European Champions Inter Milan this season - and held them to a draw at White Hart Lane.
"Both those games have helped give us a bit of pride back - not to mention four points out of six, which have put us in the top half of the table - and now I want to see us complete the week by giving a good account of ourselves at Chelsea.
"No one has to tell me how hard it is going to be. They put seven past us in this game last season and I don`t think they`ve conceded a single goal at home this season, so it`s going to be tough.
"But we`ve played well against the top teams this season.
"We`ve played six of last season`s top seven and we`ve had two wins, four draws and no defeats, so we`ve got to go there believing we can something out of this match too.
"If we do ourselves justice against the Premier League champions and really give them a game, then I`ll be happy."
Chelsea look to bring back Frank Lampard after a long spell out with a hernia problem.
They are also looking for Anelka and Alex to return after missing the last victory in midweek through slight knocks.
After suffering from a maleria scare, Drogba will be looking to start scoring goals after a quiet season for the striker.
Drogba will be as tough as it comes for Bramble and Turner but they will be looking to impress after a great season so far.
Darren Bent will be out for another couple of weeks with a hamstring injury.
John Mensah and Anton Ferdinand will also miss this game through injury.
The Ghanaian striker has been in red hot form since starting the last two games. Three goals in two games is a great record and his overall work rate and finishing has been hitting all the headlines recently.
Let's hope Gyan can step up against the Champions and break their equalled record of nine consecutive clean sheets at home.
This will be the 111th meeting between the sides. Chelsea have won 51 times, Sunderland 38 and there have been 21 draws.
The Black Cats have won only one of their last 24 away league games, a 1-0 victory at Hull in April.
Chelsea 3 - 0 Sunderland We have to prey we can play like we normally do against the top teams and give them a challenge. However, Chelsea will take no prisoners and we may need to think of damage limitation for goal difference in this game.
Everton come to the Stadium on a Monday evening on Sky
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Date:Friday November 12 2010
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|15. Hull City||30||6||10||14||-12||28|
|16. Aston Villa||30||7||7||16||-20||28|
|20. Leicester City||29||4||7||18||-21||19|
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