Sunderland and Swansea clash on the weekend with both teams likely to identify this fixture as one which they should be able to come out with a victory. Sunderland drew yet again last week and Swansea come into the game on the back of a home defeat to Southampton after being reduced to 10 men following Wilfried Bony’s two yellow cards.
The Black Cats have four points from their five games so far but have only lost so far. The main issue being the inability to convert draws into wins which leaves them 17th at the moment. This is familiar territory for Sunderland, having made a miraculous escape from relegation last season but Gus Poyet will want to stay as far from the foot of the table as possible and only wins can help his side do that, especially against the sides in and around that area of the table.
Swansea have had a positive start to the season and go into the match in 5th place despite losing their last two matches to Chelsea and Southampton respectively. Victories against Man Utd, Burnley and West Brom gave the Swans a perfect start to the season and will want to recreate the performances like those against Sunderland. Garry Monk will not be happy if they lose again having has such a good start to the season so it will be interesting as to how this Swansea team approach this match.
Connor Wickham returned from a back injury last week and is set to be followed by Steven Fletcher who has recovered from a calf injury and is in contention for the clash on Saturday. Emanuele Giaccherini should be available after suffering from an ankle injury but Sebastian Coates, on loan from Liverpool, is set to miss out with a knock.
Swansea will be grateful that star striker Wilfried Bony was able to serve his suspension in the Capital One cup this week following his red card against Southampton last weekend. He will be available for the trip to Wearside but the Swans will be without Dwight Tiendalli due to a groin strain. Leon Britton and Jordi Amat are also set to miss out.
- Swansea are one of only two team to have not drawn this season, whereas Sunderland have drawn a record high 4 out of their first 5 games.
- Sunderland have kept three clean sheets in four Premier League home games against Welsh sides.
- Swansea has kept only three clean sheets in their last 18 Premier League games.
- Sunderland haven’t won against Swansea in their last 4 meeting, drawing twice and losing twice
- Sunderland are one of only three team to have not won a game this season
Recent Head to Heads
2013/2014 Sun 11 May Sunderland 1 – 3 Swansea City
2013/2014 Sat 19 Oct Swansea City 4 – 0 Sunderland
2012/2013 Tue 29 Jan Sunderland 0 – 0 Swansea City
2012/2013 Sat 01 Sep Swansea City 2 – 2 Sunderland
2011/2012 Sat 21 Jan Sunderland 2 – 0 Swansea City
2011/2012 Sat 27 Aug Swansea City 0 – 0 Sunderland
Sunderland: Seb Larsson
Since scoring a late equalizer against West Brom in Sunderland’s opening fixture at the start of the season, Seb Larsson has not managed to impress too much just like the rest of the Sunderland team so far this season. The Swede has already equalled his goal tally from last season with that goal against West Brom but will need to add more goals to his name this season to help the Sunderland side obtain better results. With two assists to his name already this season however from 10 chances, he does not lack in terms of creativity and he will have to continue to show flair to help provide goals for the attackers. One of the two assists that he has had this season came from a cross, which is one of his specialties with 8 of his 26 crosses this season being accurate, which will come in handy with players like Wickham and Altidore up front. His ability to accurately pass the ball into good areas is very good as well with 85% of 212 passes that he has made being accurate.
Swansea: Gylfi Sigurdsson
Gylfi Sigurdsson got his Swansea return off to a terrific start, scoring the winner in Swansea’s historic 2-1 win over Man United in their first match this season. The midfielder had settled back into life at Swansea quite well but recently he hasn’t been as influential as he can normally prove to be with the goal against Man United proving to be his only goal this season and for a player who is known for scoring goals he will probably be disappointed with that. He could consider himself unlucky to not have more goals especially as he has a shot accuracy of 83% with 5 of his 6 shots being on target. Just like Larsson, Sigurdsson has been superb creatively with 4 assists already this season from 13 chances created showing that not only does he have the ability to score goals but to also provide them as well. Sigurdsson is not really known for his passing but so far this season he has shown that he is very capable of making good accurate passes with 84% of 181 passes that he has made this season being accurate. Sigurdsson can be a real danger if he can use all of his skills to the best of his abilities.
I’m backing Sunderland to finally record their first victory of the season at home and kick on in order to turn the draws into victories.
My Prediction: Sunderland 2-1 Swansea
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