Date:Wednesday December 4 2013
Stadium of Light
Wednesday, 4 December
This is probably the one that Gus Poyet has been waiting for, a chance to see how his side stands up against the club he has affection for.
But that doesn't mean we'll be going into this game to do his old club any favours, a third home win on the bounce would be just what the Doctor ordered and boost the side even more after they got a good draw at the weekend against Villa.
Chelsea arrive on the back of a televised 3-1 win over Southampton and they seemed to sweep them aside pretty easy, the lads have got to stand up and be counted in this one and if the crowd are right behind them, there is a serious chance that Gus can lead us onto a first Premier League win at home to Chelsea.
Gus Poyet: 'This is one of the fixtures I have been looking forward to, because it is Chelsea and I am looking to beat Chelsea if it's possible.
'The three points is the most important thing. It will feel quite special. I don't know if the Chelsea supporters will support me.
'It would be nice to get support from everyone on the pitch - the home and the away fans. It will be a great experience.'
Phil Bardsley: 'It's the nature of the Premier League there are no weak teams, you have to pick up points no matter who it is against.
'We managed to do it against Manchester City so there's no reason why we can't do it against Chelsea.'
Kieron Westwood could be back from injury, but it remains to be seen if he will return straight to the starting line up as Vito Mannone has been in good form.
Carlos Cuellar will still be missing with a thigh injury, but Jack Colback and Lee Cattermole will be pushing for a return to the team.
The lack of goals means that Jozy Altidore may be considered for a starting place.
Adam Johnson was used as a substitute on Saturday, and he will be hoping he can get back into the starting line up.
Ki Sung-Yueng will be crucial for Sunderland, he will need hang onto the ball and make passes count as Chelsea are very good at keeping the ball once they have it.
Oscar went off on Sunday with an ankle injury and the Chelsea boss says he will miss the game. Samuel Eto`o (hamstring) and David Luiz (knee) will also be missing.
Ba will be pushing for a starting place after his performance at the weekend. The former Newcastle striker managed to get a goal and caused problems for the Southampton defence.
Ashley Cole could return after Azpilicueta was preferred on Sunday and Frank Lampard played a huge part in Chelsea`s comeback when he came on as sub, he could also start.
Juan Mata hasn't been a favourite of Mourinho this season but against Southampton he created five chances and he provided the assist for John Terry's goal. He deserves his chance.
Chelsea have won the last five encounters, and 16 of the previous 17. The only exception to that sequence is the Black Cats' 3-0 win at Stamford Bridge on 14 November 2010.
The last time Sunderland got anything out of a home game against Chelsea was on 9 December 2001 when they drew 0-0. Their last home win over the Blues was a 1-0 victory on 14 October 2000.
The Staffordshire based official was last in charge of a Sunderland game at the end of September when they lost 3-0 away to West Brom. That day there were two yellow cards handed out, Ki picked up one of them and Colback got the other.
In October he took charge of Chelsea's win at the Emirates Stadium, the score was 2-0 to the Blues and the two yellow cards shown went to Chelsea players Essien and Mikel.
So far this season Dowd has been in charge of 13 games and has shown 52 yellow cards and one red.
Dowd's assistants on the night will be M Perry and D Bryan and the fourth official will be S Attwell.
Sunderland have been impressive at home since Poyet took over, but we don`t have a substantial goal threat. Chelsea do and they will also probably dominate. But so did Man City.... 1-0 Black Cats
Saturday - Tottenham Home
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Date:Wednesday December 4 2013
Stats: Hull City v Sunderland (Sunday March 9 2014)
Team News From The KC Stadium (Sunday March 9 2014)
Gus Expects More From Altidore (Saturday March 8 2014)
Borini Receives The Backing Of Rodgers (Saturday March 8 2014)
Ki Has Had No Whispers From Swansea. (Friday March 7 2014)
Jozy Altidore Ready To Fight Back (Friday March 7 2014)
Borini Sets Sights On A Wembley Return (Monday March 3 2014)
League Survival Is Definitely Possible. (Monday March 3 2014)
Poyet So Proud Of His Players (Monday March 3 2014)
Stats: Man City v Sunderland (Sunday March 2 2014)
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