Writer: Gary Johnson
Date:Saturday March 19 2011
Stadium of Light
Sunderland needed the help of a beach ball last time to secure three points against Liverpool but this time we should not need the help.
Sunderland will be in a confident mood after drawing away to Arsenal and key players returning to the squad.
Liverpool only have the league to play for after a shocking season and could be a wounded animal after Thursdays Europa Cup exit.
Andy Carroll will return to the North East and will be a handful in the air but awful on the deck.
There will also be the matter of Uruguay V Ghana in the shape of Suarez lining up against Muntari, Mensah and Gyan.
If Sunderland can win on Sunday they will go one point behind Liverpool.
'I will shake his hand when I see him before the game on Sunday, because I am a good sportsman,' said Gyan.
'People are waiting for something bad to happen or for me to be disrespectful towards him but I would never do that.
'We are not enemies, so I will definitely shake his hand, but there were a lot of tears at the time. A lot of grown men were crying on the pitch and in the dressing room. I shed tears on the field. You can go back and see the clip.
'At the time, when the whistle blew for the end of the game I was on the pitch crying. But Suarez didn't come anywhere near me to try to say sorry or anything like that.
'Maybe he could see, like everyone else, the condition I was in and the way I felt. But he knew. He knew that he couldn't come to ANY Ghanaian and say sorry because... well, let's just say that maybe something might have happened.
'Afterwards, I just told myself that I'd had a good World Cup and that I had to move on. I'm young. There are a lot of good things coming for me in the future.
'At the time, it did not seem that way. It was our big opportunity to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup for the first time. Not just for Ghana, but for Africa. It was our big moment.
'That's why everyone was so downhearted. But the players are sportsmen. They know that they have to move on and accept it.'
Sunderland will have Onuoha, Cattermole, Zenden, Welbeck, Campbell all back from injury as Sunderland look close to full fitness.
John Mensah is an injury doubt and could be replaced by Anton Ferdinand.
His brief appearance at The Emirates was enough to lift the entire squad to earn a hard fought point. His link up play between midfield and attack will be crucial and he will have an important role on Sunday.
Gerrard will miss the game but Daniel Agger is looking likely to return to the squad.
Three Ghana players will face the cheat that is Luis Suarez and he will be a handful for our defence.
If we can manage to contain him we have every chance of catching up Liverpool in the league.
A Liverpool victory would be the 250th league win of Kenny Dalglish's managerial career (at Liverpool, Blackburn and Newcastle).
Just seven different players have scored a league goal for Sunderland this season, the fewest in the Premier League.
Referee: Kevin Friend Assistant referees: Billy Smallwood & Adam Watts Fourth official: Martin Atkinson
Sunderland 3-1 Liverpool I have a very strong confidence going into this game, with the return of Campbell, Welbeck, Onuoha and Cattermole we should be looking for three points.
Sunderland head to Eastlands next Sunday to face Man City
Date:Saturday March 19 2011
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