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MATCH PREVIEW – Arsenal vs Sunderland AFC: Black Cats travel to Emirates for festive Carabao Cup tie

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Credit: charnsitr via stock.adobe.com - Arsenal face Sunderland at the Emirates on Tuesday evening in Carabao Cup quarter-final...

Sunderland face a challenging trip to the Emirates on Tuesday evening to face an in-form Arsenal side with a place in the Carabao Cup semi-finals up for grabs.

The Black Cats head into the tie as underdogs but are in decent form and unbeaten in their last four games, a run that includes three wins and a draw.

Arsenal are in good form themselves and thrashed Leeds 4-1 last time out, with Gabriel Martinelli grabbing himself a brace. In their last game at the Emirates, the Gunners were victorious over West Ham in a fiery London derby.

Following a goalless draw at Championship side QPR, the Black Cats came out winners after the spot-kick lottery – earning them a quarter-final draw at Arsenal, after previous wins over Port Vale, Blackpool and Wigan.

The home side have scored 11 goals so far in the Carabao Cup, without reply and find themselves in the quarter-finals after their cruising 2-0 victory of Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds. The North London club also eased through their opening two ties in the competition, comfortably beating both West Brom and Wimbledon without conceding a goal.

Sunderland’s quest for promotion to the Championship under Lee Johnson has progressed well, and they currently sit third in League One after a disappointing 1-1 draw away at Ipswich on Saturday. Nathan Broadhead’s second-half equaliser was his fifth of the season as the on-loan Everton striker scored for second game running.

Despite the huge task to upset the odds in North-London, Sunderland are not required to play League One football again until December 27, so may go all guns blazing at the Emirates before a brief Christmas break – with nothing to lose.

Johnson’s side have played a more direct style of play in recent weeks and the move to a more attacking approach might be adopted once again.

However, the visitors do have injury concerns and the manager may face a tricky juggling act when weighing up the important of the Carabao Cup in relation to the need to gain promotion back to the Championship. Having been stuck in the third tier for three years running fans may be dubious as to how strong the team is come Tuesday evening.

For Arsenal, the tie provides a perfect opportunity to progress to the semi-finals and might represent their best chance of winning silverware this season – it would be their second trophy win under Arteta following their FA cup delight back in 2020 after defeating Chelsea 2-1 in the final.

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  • The two sides have clashed on 153 occasions in the past and Arsenal have a superior record with 62 wins to their name. Sunderland were victorious on 50 occasions while 41 matches in the past have ended in a share of the spoils.
  • This will be their first meeting since a Premier League clash in May 2017 that saw Alexis Sanchez’s brace condemn the Black Cats to a 2-0 defeat en-route to getting relegated.
  • Sunderland haven’t lost a League Cup match since August 2018 (0-2 vs Sheffield Wednesday). They’ve won six and drawn three of their nine games since, with both of their eliminations in that time coming via penalty shootouts.

POTENTIAL LINE-UPs

SAFC:                                                                                                                              Arsenal:

Pre-match thoughts?

Can Sunderland pull off a festive surprise? How seriously will Johnson take the fixture? Should the game go ahead given rise in Covid cases?

Join in the conversation and have your say…

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Police Alerted After Newcastle United Fan Urinates On Statue Devoted to Sunderland Legend

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Police have been alerted about social media footage which appears to show a Newcastle United fan urinating on a statue of Sunderland football legend Bob Stokoe.

The tribute, outside Sunderland’s Stadium of Light ground, recreates the late Stokoe’s famous dance across Wembley’s turf after he had masterminded the club’s 1-0 FA Cup final victory over Leeds United.

Footage has now emerged on social media of a male wearing a Newcastle United change shirt while apparently urinating on the statue.

In response to the images, a Sunderland Football Club spokesperson said on Monday: “This matter has been referred to the police and we will not be making any further comment at this moment in time.”

Stokoe, ironically, is also a hero and an FA Cup winner on Tyneside. Born in 1930 in Mickley, in Northumberland, the central defender made 261 appearances for Newcastle United and was a member of their 1955 FA Cup final winning team.

Arriving at Sunderland in November 1972 while they were struggling towards the bottom of Division Two, he plotted the club’s FA Cup final triumph in May the following year before guiding the Black Cats back to the top flight in 1976.

He resigned just months later following a poor start to their Division One. Stokoe died at the age of 73 in 2004 in Hartlepool after suffering from pneumonia.

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Newcastle Fan Gets ‘Attacked’ by Aiden McGeady in Bar With Sunderland First Team

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A video was published to Twitter which shows a Newcastle fan get ‘attacked’ by Aiden McGeady in a bar with the Sunderland first team.

Twitter user @rheppellhardy, who has since deleted his account following backlash, wrote a tweet on Wednesday night explaining what happened in a Stack venue, before the post started to gain traction.

He said: “Why the fuck has the actual Sunderland first team come and started on me and big Premier League Aiden McGeady ripped me top in the stack 🤣🤣🤣.

 

He issued the above video before captioning it with: “Someone who I’ve never heard of said how much are yous on ur skint 🤣 league 1 yina”

Again he wrote in another post: “Scuse me mate can a have a word, do you know who I am” 🤣🤣 No fucking clue mate”

There were plenty of reaction tweets too….

@worthy_noah: “I remember my first pint aswell mate”

@worthy_noah: “Not sure I went on like this much of a cock like”

@MackemTalk_: “You saw the state of you lad he’d Snap you in half But again You had to act like the Big man Because Your boyfriends where with you”

Did you see what happened?

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Fans urged to clap at Newcastle match in memory of teen

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Mason Kirk (Credit: Family Picture)

Fans are being encouraged to clap at Newcastle match on Saturday in memory of teen who died from cancer.

Mason Kirk passed away suddenly from a rare form of cancer in January – ITV reports.

The family of the 17-year-old are urging people to clap at the 17th minute of the Newcastle vs Brighton match.

His dad Michael told ITV News Tyne Tees: “After complaining about back pain for several weeks and unsuccessful trips to a walk-in centre, and his GP, I took him to A&E where he received an MRI scan that showed lesions in his spine.

“We were transferred to the RVI, which is where we received a diagnosis no parent wants to hear – aggressive and inoperable late-stage ATRT cancer in his spine and brainstem”

“Mason died on the 27 January, just nine days after he was diagnosed.

“It’s took awhile for me to pull myself round (as I suffer from severe mental illness). So I decided to begin organising something to raise awareness of ATRT and teen cancer, and to pay tribute to our beautiful brave son.

“Mason was an avid Newcastle United fan, I took him to his first game when he was 6 and he caught the NUFC bug. Later, he and his friends bought season tickets.”

Michael continues: “Mason’s memory will live on through myself, his Mam Leanne, his little brother Alfy, cousin Liam and the rest of our family.

“He was the nucleus of our lives…our world is shattered but we cannot let our courageous son’s story go untold.”

“We realise things are tight for a lot of us at the minute but we’d like any donations to go to Great North Children’s Hospital or the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.”

ITV also said that Mason will feature in the programme.

Go here to donate to Great North Children’s Hospital.

Or to donate to the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation go here.

 

 

 

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