Sunderland head to St James’ Park on Sunday, looking for a fourth successive win over the Magpies, and just their third victory of the season.
The Black Cats enter the game on the back of successive draws with Liverpool and West Ham, whilst their Tyneside rivals have conceded eight goals in their last two games - 4-1 and 4-0 defeats to Arsenal and Tottenham respectively.
Newcastle’s task could be made even more difficult with the potential injury to Jak Alnwick, who appears to have suffered a shoulder injury that keeps him out of the game. They are still unsure of whether they can sign a ‘keeper on an emergency loan, and Freddie Woodman could be thrown into the Wearside club’s biggest league game of the season.
However, Black Cats defender Anthony Reveillere does not think the trip to St James’ Park will be easy, and he named Moussa Sissoko as the key man who must be stopped if Newcastle are to be defeated.
“I know Sissoko well and he has been very important for Newcastle this season,” the veteran full-back told the Chronicle.
“I was in the squad when he was making his debut for France and I always thought he would adapt well to the English game.
“He’s very powerful, quick and can score goals, but we have to prepare to stop him and Newcastle.”
Sissoko has enjoyed a strong season on Tyneside, and his improved form in recent weeks has seen the 25-year-old linked with a potential move away from St James’ Park over the January transfer window. Changing from his usual wide position into the number 10 role behind the striker, Sissoko has brought drive and strength to a position that has troubled the side since Yohan Cabaye’s departure, and his upturn in form coincided with the Magpies enjoying a great run of results earlier this term.
Manager Alan Pardew has already expressed his desire to see the midfielder remain with the Toon, and has suggested that he could be a future captain of the side - having already deputised for Fabricio Coloccini this season.