Come Sunday families will be divided, towns will be split and workplaces will resemble a cold war stand-off.
It’s the big one. It is the Tyne-Wear (or Wear-Tyne this time) derby!
This game needs no build up at all. Anyone worth their salt, whether they be from the North-East or not, will know what their own local derby feels like. Their is no “best” local derby, each derby is the best in the eyes of the fans involved. This one is ours, which makes it the best!
Bragging rights are on offer as both sides seek to put one over their local rivals. A win in this game is quite simply a must although avoiding defeat in an away derby does at least offer us a chance of a moral victory, again.
The good news is that Fabricio Coloccini, Steven Taylor and Tim Krul all have a chance of claiming their starting places in the side back after injury. Danny Simpson should be fine to play although his hamstring is still being “watched” apparently, whilst nearly all of our players made it through international duty unscathed and should be available for selection, apart from Shane Ferguson who withdrew from duty with Northern Ireland due to a hip problem.
Ryan Taylor, Dan Gosling and Haris Vuckic are all most definitely out of this one.
James McClean and Phil Bardsley should at least make the squad after recovering from injuries. Titus Bramble is doubtful while Lee Cattermole serves the final game of his three match suspension. The two latest bits of news are probably a boost for the home side given their performances in recent derbies…
In terms of Premier League action over on the dark side, Newcastle have a quite remarkable record having lost just once in nine trips to Wearside. However if you look at our league record since year dot, it’s actually Sunderland who have the better record having recorded 23 league victories to our 20.
This will be the 147th meeting between the two sides in all competitions. Newcastle have won on 53 occasions, Sunderland have been victorious 45 times with the other 48 meetings ending in a draw.
Our last trip to Wearside saw us make the short trip back home with three points in the bag courtesy of a fine strike from Ryan Taylor. That was our first victory at the Stadium of Light since 2006 when we won 4-1, even Chopra scored…
Stats and facts:
Steven Fletcher has scored AL of Sunderland’s Premier League goals so far this term. It’s a similar story for us with Demba Ba and Hatem Ben Arfa being the only two players to net in the league for us so far this season.
Shola Ameobi has scored more goals against Sunderland than any Newcastle player who has gone before him. On Sunday he will be looking for goal number eight against the Mackems, and if he can do it he will have marked his 250th appearance for the club with a goal.
Sunderland have had the fewest shots at goal of any team in the top five leagues in Europe (Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1) so far this season.
Newcastle have not won an away game in the last seven attempts. Sunderland have won just one game out of the last 14.
Both sides will be looking to bounce back after 3-0 defeats to Manchester City and Manchester United in the final game before the international break.
It’s hard to have a final thought when I have so many flying through my head. Fear, excitement, anticipation, dread, nerves and so on…
Suffice to say I’ll keep it short and sweet for this one. WE MUST NOT LOSE UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES!
Howay the lads!
Date: Sunday, 21st October, 2012
Time: 1:30pm – Live on Sky
Venue:Stadium of Light