Newcastle United v Sunderland - Match Preview, Stats & Team News

To be played on Saturday 1st February 2014 at 12:45. Venue: St. James' Park, Newcastle.

Odds: Newcastle United 18/19, Draw 13/5, Sunderland 10/3

Last season: 0-3

Preview & injury news

Newcastle go into this game looking for revenge for the two previous derby defeats against Sunderland. Last season saw a humiliation at the hands of Paulo Di Canio's side, whilst earlier on in the season saw Gus Poyet pick up his first win as Mackems boss against the Toon.

The home side's season has been reasonable thus far as it sees them lie in 8th place in the table, three points behind Manchester United in seventh, and nine points off the Champions League spots. However, the loss of Yohan Cabaye to Paris Saint Germain could be a big one, their first game without him was a 0-0 draw against Norwich City in midweek - where it not for the woodwork it could have been a win. However, new signing Luuk De Jong from Borussia Monchengladbach has a chance to feature.

Sunderland come into this game on the back of a good bit of momentum having managed to climb out of the bottom three for the first time since August with a win over Stoke City, which followed them reaching the League Cup Final and the fifth round of the FA Cup.

On the injury front Yoan Gouffran is facing a fitness test for the home side as he has a knock, whilst Papiss Cisse could also face a fitness test with a back problem. Gabriel Obertan is also a doubt. Fabio Coloccini is still sidelined with a knee ligament injury and but could return in two weeks' time whilst Gael Bigirimana is not due back until towards the end of the month as he recovers from an ankle injury.

Newcastle will also be without top scorer Loic Remy through suspension after he was sent off during the 0-0 draw with Norwich City in midweek.

Sunderland's main injury worry is Lee Cattermole who has a knock. Defender Carlos Cuellar is a week away from being considered after a thigh injury, whilst goalkeeper Kieran Westwood is sidelined with a shoulder injury.

Key stats 

Here are the two sides' top scorers in the Premier League this season.

Loïc Remy Newcastle FW 11 21


Yohan Cabaye Newcastle MF 7 19 1,509
Yoan Gouffran Newcastle FW 6 22


Adam Johnson Sunderland MF 6 21 1,384
Steven Fletcher Sunderland FW 3 19 1,178

Their average possession statistics

NamePossession PercentageGames
Newcastle United 48.39 23
NamePossession PercentageGames
Sunderland 45.30 23

And the amount of clean sheets they have kept this season

NameClean SheetGames
Newcastle United 7 23
NameClean SheetGames
Sunderland 6 23

5 players to watch

Luuk De Jong - De Jong has just joined Newcastle and is eligible for a debut against Sunderland, and there is a chance he could play given Loic Remy's suspension. It would be a baptism of fire and a chance for Newcastle fans to get a close look at their new man in an intense atmosphere.

Fabio Borini - He became a bit of a cult hero with his winner in the reverse fixture at the Stadium of Light and has popped up with a couple of important goals for Sunderland this season. Another big game, does the Italian have another big goal in him?

Yoan Gouffran - Gouffran is no stranger to getting on the scoresheet and Newcastle will be hoping he is fit enough to play a part in what is a huge game given that their main goal threat is suspended. Whether he will be risked is another matter. 

Adam Johnson - Gus Poyet seems to be getting the best out of Johnson at the moment. He seems accomplished in front of goal, confident, and willing to take the game to the back four. Can he repeat what he did at St James' Park last season and find the net?

Moussa Sissoko - With Cabaye now gone, there may be a lot more pressure on Sissoko to deliver in the middle of the park. A different player who carries more pace, but he can be creative and effective, and he can be dangerous.

Earlier on in the season

Sunderland 2-1 Newcastle United 

It was a memorable victory for Sunderland and it gave Gus Poyet his first win as manager. The home side started the same quickly when a well worked short corner ultimately led to Steven Fletcher heading in Adam Johnson's cross. It was a lead that last until half time and Newcastle began to ramp up the pressure, with the Sunderland defence eventually cracking just before the hour mark as Mathieu Debuchy capitalised on slack defending from Johnson to tap in at the far post. Poyet introduced Fabio Borini who scored his first goal for the club five minutes from time with a terrific strike from 25 yards to give Sunderland all three points and lift them off the bottom.

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