MATCH PREVIEW – Sunderland AFC vs Plymouth Argyle: The Black Cats look to make it back-to-back home wins and could move into automatic promotion places with victory
Sunderland welcome fellow promotion hopeful’s Plymouth to the Stadium of Light on Saturday afternoon following their midweek demolition of the Shrimps.
A win for the home side could see them return to the automatic promotion places once again and would add to the momentum created by their current five-game unbeaten run.
Rotherham and Wigan are amongst the three teams above Sunderland in the table and both have 41 points, with Wigan having played a game less.
The sides will be expecting to win their home games against Burton and Ipswich respectively but a slip up from either team could see the Wearsiders move into the automatic promotion spots.
Wycombe are in third and have played a game more than Sunderland and two more than Wigan so are expected to drop down the table once everyone has played the same number of fixtures. They are also on 41 points and face 17th place AFC Wimbledon on Saturday afternoon.
Despite slip-ups being unlikely this game-week, Sunderland must keep their momentum going and add to the pressure on the teams above them as the Black Cats remain one of the most in-form teams in the league.
Manager Lee Johnson will be happy with his sides display on Tuesday evening after they showed an attacking ruthlessness and pressed with a high-intensity but will know good performances must continue if his side are to gain promotion back to the Championship.
Sunderland have moved up to third after five games without a loss and head into the weekend’s clash just two points adrift of the automatic promotion places.
Although they failed to claim victory in the Oxford clash last weekend, that result didn’t dampen spirits in the Sunderland dressing room as they thumped Morecambe 5-0 in midweek.
Leon Dajaku managed to get himself on the scoresheet once again, and there was a goal each for Ross Stewart and Alex Pritchard, while Nathan Broadhead netted a brace.
Lee Johnson named an unchanged team for the third consecutive game as the Black Cats faced the Shrimps on Tuesday evening, but did play a slightly tweaked formation. The manager has identified the need to move to a more fast-passed and front-foot style in his quest for promotion.
Therefore Sunderland are playing more direct and have a team full of mobile attackers – but more steel might be required against albeit a much tougher opponent this weekend in Plymouth, who themselves are battling for promotion.
The Wearsiders look to claim seven points from a possible nine in their fixtures this week and will be hopeful of drawing upon their impressive home form that has helped them to win eight of their ten games at the Stadium of Light this term.
Steven Schumacher will be take charge of his first away game as Plymouth Argyle boss when his side travel to the North East for Saturday’s League One encounter and will be looking for his side to get their first win in five League One games.
The Pilgrims, who were once table toppers, have dropped down to fifth in the table but are still in the hunt for promotion and will be hoping to be galvanised under their new boss.
Only two points separate Schumacher’s side and Sunderland, meaning the visitors could leapfrog the Black Cats with a victory.
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- The last league encounter between these clubs was in League One last season and finished Plymouth Argyle 1-3 Sunderland.
- Sunderland have scored at least 2 goals in 6 of their last 7 matches against Plymouth in all competitions.
Sunderland are still without Dennis Cirkin, Corry Evans and Denver Hume due to injury issues. The hosts are also missing the injured duo of Aiden McGeady and Niall Huggins until 2022. Luke O’Nien is recovering from surgery.
Frederik Alves and Will Harris joined Sunderland’s growing injury-list last week and there doesn’t seem to be many previously injured players back available for selection to face Plymouth,
After such an impressive display in midweek, Lee Johnson could name an unchanged lineup for Saturday’s contest, for the fourth game running.
Plymouth are likely to keep changes to a minimum, although Danny Mayor may come into the side with Ryan Broom dropping to the bench.
Ryan Hardie has top-scored for the visitors this season, and he will continue his forward partnership with Luke Jephcott on Saturday.
Brendan Galloway remains the only confirmed absentee for Plymouth.
Thoughts? Will Sunderland make it back-to-back home wins? Can Johnson’s side return to the top of League One?
Join in the conversation and have your say…
Newcastle United to Reveal New Shirt Sponsor?
footballinsider247 are reporting that the main shirt sponsor slot for Newcastle United is expected to be filled by airline SAUDI, who sponsored Newcastle’s mid-season tour of their owners’ homeland in December.
They state ‘This site revealed in February that there is frustration at St James’ Park that they have inherited a kit deal with Castore worth just £5m per year with no break clause and several seasons left to run.’
Newcastle’s recently appointed CEO Darren Eales has already previously expressed that the club at looking at all commercial opportunities and fans on Twitter were keen to mock up their expectation for the new shirts, see below and let us know your thoughts and also see our below video on how NUFC can increase commercial avenues..
Eddie Howe’s team are currently in a strong position to achieve a European slot which would increase revenue into the club allowing more spend whilst staying within Financial Fair Play which is something Howe has spoken about on several occasions as they look to stay within. If the club do reach a European slot it should help significantly with recruitment in the summer by making it a more attractive proposition to any incoming targets.
What do you think of the kits – let us know on our facebook page and join in on the conversation.
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Credit: NUFC kit concept – twitter
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Amazon filming Newcastle United for “All or Nothing” style documentary
Amazon Prime are currently filming behind-the-scenes footage at Newcastle United for a new documentary.
The docu-series will provide an insight into the club and its efforts to secure a top-four finish and a piece of silverware in the 2022-23 season.
Reports today revealed that camera crews have been filming a four-part documentary for their All or Nothing series. Sky Sports’ Keith Downie confirmed that the series will cover the club and the new owners as they attempt to qualify for the Champions League and win a trophy.
The All or Nothing series has previously documented other Premier League Clubs including Manchester City, Arsenal, and Spurs as well as the Brazilian national team, Juventus, and the All Blacks of rugby.
Something I mentioned last night on @tfNUFC: Camera crews have been filming behind-the-scenes at Newcastle United for a four-part documentary to be shown on Amazon.
The series will chart the club & its owners as they attempt to win a trophy & qualify for The Champ League #NUFC
— Keith Downie (@SkySports_Keith) February 8, 2023
Newcastle face Manchester United in the Carabao Cup final on February 26 at Wembley.
🗓️ 26.02.23@ManUtd 🆚 @NUFC #EFL | #CarabaoCup pic.twitter.com/V23zWPDoxP
— Carabao Cup (@Carabao_Cup) February 1, 2023
The Magpies have featured three times in Europe’s most prestigious competition.
Most recently in the 2003-04 season as they reached the third qualifying round, eventually losing on penalties to Serbian side FK Partizan.
The season before the Toon finished third in the 2002-03 Champions League group stages, winning twice against Bayer Leverkusen and drawing with Inter Milan 2-2 at the San Siro. The lineup that night; Given, Solano, O’Brien, Dyer, Shearer (C), Bellamy, Speed, Griffin, Hughes, Dabizas and Viana.
The series is expected to air later this year and will be available on Amazon Prime.
Based on previous seasons, you can expect exclusive access to training sessions, team meetings and match days, giving fans an in-depth look at what goes on behind the scenes on a day-to-day basis at Newcastle United.
It is set to be an incredible storyline and one that should provide fans with some real insight into what it takes to compete at the top level of professional football.
What do you think Newcastle fans?
Does this excite you or do you stand more with Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp who once said the cameras could be intrusive to the dressing room when he turned down the offer from Amazon In 2018?
Join the conversation on our Facebook page…
Newcastle target rejects Everton move following £45m bid.
Everton have made a £40million bid with £5m in add-ons to sign Connor Gallagher from Chelsea.
This comes after Newcastle completed the signing of Anthony Gordon, the club’s second most expensive transfer behind Alexander Isak.
Everton received an initial fee of £40m plus add-ons that could increase the deal to £45m.
EXCL: Everton have submitted a bid to sign Conor Gallagher from Chelsea. It’s £40m proposal plus £5m add ons. 🚨🔵 #EFC
Chelsea will make a decision soon as there are also other clubs interested in Gallagher — and player has to decide his future too. pic.twitter.com/xZeuGqaR01
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) January 30, 2023
The Toffees currently sit 19th in the Premier League and are looking to reinvest the money from the Gordon deal to sign much-needed players under newly appointed manager Sean Dyche.
But, multiple sources have reported today that Gallagher is not actively pushing for a move and has no intention of going to Goodison Park. However, with Chelsea having met the record-breaking €120m release clause for World Cup winner Enzo Fernandez, Gallagher may be forced to leave the club if the transfer is complete.
🚨| Conor Gallagher is not interested in a move to Everton 🔵 pic.twitter.com/0CYzXjBoBd
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) January 30, 2023
This leaves Newcastle an option as the player would prefer a move to a top-six club.
This morning, Eddie Howe said, “We’ll see what we can do to try & bring a player in. There’s no guarantees. In terms of permanent signings, it will be very difficult. We’ll look at a potential loan. But it’s got to be the right player & not one for the sake of it”.
Due to financial fair play, the only way Newcastle could sign the player is through a loan, with an obligation to buy the player for at least £45m, the same price they paid for Anthony Gordon.
Gallagher has been playing regular Premier League football over the last two seasons. Since returning to his parent club Chelsea, the 22-year-old has been linked with a move away to numerous Premier League clubs.
Last season he was named Crystal Palace’s Player of the Season by their fans. He also won the Player of the Month award twice, Goal of the Month once, and was awarded the Young Player of Year at the 2022 London Football Awards.
In the same season, he made 36 appearances scoring eight goals and registering three assists that earned Palace a 12th-place finish, one point behind Newcastle.
Have Your Say!
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Does he start?
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