Jamie Redknapp has told SkySports he believes Sunderland will be relegated this coming season.
The former Liverpool and Tottenham midfielder says the club's transfer activity has not caught his eye, and despite surviving last season he believes the Black Cats will go down along with Norwich City and Watford.
He said: "Sunderland have been dancing with the devil for a couple of seasons and nothing significant seems to have changed. It’s probably my heart ruling my head but I’m hoping Bournemouth will perform best out of the three promoted sides."
Sunderland were caught up in a survival scrap last season, and made the bold decision to fire Gus Poyet with weeks remaining, calling in Dick Advocaat to steady the ship.
He was convinced to stay on for another season, with the aim of pushing up the table rather than simply surviving.
They have been active in the transfer market this summer even if Redknapp is not convinced. So far they have signed Younes Kaboul, Sebastian Coates and Jeremain Lens, and unlike the hit and miss days of Steve Bruce, perhaps this summer less is more.
Their recent sale of Connor Wickham to Crystal Palace will likely provide funds for further signings, and new additions are surely bound to happen before transfer deadline day.
They kick the season off with a trip to Leicester City, and an away win will ease any such fears they could get caught up in another relegation battle.