Festive Forecasts - Where Might Sunderland Find Themselves After Liverpool?








Sunderland have some tricky fixtures over the festive period but what about our closest relegation rivals? Thankfully we won't have the 'bottom at Christmas' tag, but 'tis it the season to be bottom shortly after?


Manchester united (a)
Zlatan is looking a bit difficult to contend with right now. United are unbeaten in nine and without a home defeat in the last three months, you can understand why most are writing this off as a home win. It wouldn't be the first time they dropped a couple of points at home, but they probably won't, will they?

Forecast - 0 points

Hull (v Man City away) - 0 points
Swansea (v West Ham at home) - 3 points
Palace (v Watford away) - 1 point
Burnley (v Boro at home) - 3 points

Incidentally, if you think I am a guru when it comes, you'll find the best odds if you have a look around. Want more information? If so, you can visit dailyenhanced.co.uk. Given my gambling success rate, I would recommend you actively bet against everything I predict.

Burnley (a)
This is the big one of the lot. Burnley are on the same points as Leicester right now, so I should really be including the Champions in this list. But I'm not. Anyway, this is your typical Sunderland lose after picking up a great result at home sort of game, with Burnley probably not having as many points on the board as perhaps their performances have deserved. Despite that, red and white goggles on, I think we'll take a very important point here.

Forecast - 1 point

Hull (v Everton at home) - 0 points
Swansea (v Bournemouth at home) - 1 point
Palace (v Arsenal away) - 0 points
Burnley (v Sunderland at home) - 1 point

Liverpool (h) 
Providing we approach this match in a slightly more positive way than we did in the reverse fixture, our home from gives us a decent opportunity. Patrick van Aanholt might have snatched a point against the comprehensive league leaders, and you may argue it would have been a deserved(ish) point, so there is no reason not to think we can't put up a similar performance against Liverpool. Coutinho-less, it's an opportunity and one which I think will earn us another vital point. Maybe. Hopefully. Possibly. Erm.

Forecast - 1 point

Hull (v West Brom away) - 0 points
Swansea (v Palace away) - 1 point
Palace (v Swansea at home) - 1 point
Burnley (v Man City away) - 0 points

So, assuming my forecasts are right, this would be the table at the bottom;

Burnley - 21 points
Palace - 17 points
Sunderland - 16 points
Swansea - 16 points
Hull - 12 points

Not much looks like changing over the next three games, not in my view anyway. Hull, who look like a team set for the drop, may find themselves further adrift with Burnley opening up a reason gap between themselves and a bottom three which would, unfortunately, include us. Perhaps we can sneak a win against Burnley which would change the picture considerably.

'Tis the season to be bottom? Perhaps not for Sunderland. Sorry not sorry Hull.
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Top Four Former Players for Both Sunderland & Hull City

Top Four Former Players for Both Sunderland & Hull City

Now, I did aim for five former players because it’s a much nicer number. However, there isn’t exactly a wealth of quality to choose from. There is no way I’m advocating ‘the Curse of Kilbane’ or Michael Bridges being part of a ‘top players list’. So, here are our top four players who have represented both Sunderland and Hull City…if I’ve missed anyone who was actually good – please say so!

 

4 – Michael Turner

Overrated at Hull City, perhaps underrated at Sunderland. His biggest probably up here, other than distinct lack of any pace, was the complete inconsistency regarding his partner in defence. I’d like to know just how many players he did partner at the back, but I’m too lazy to do the legwork for what would be a pretty low-impact statistic. So I’ll make it up and say he had at least six. He looked a possible England international during his some 150 appearances for the Tigers, unfortunately he never kicked on and his level certainly seems to be battling against Premier League relegation.

3 – Micky Horswill

Horswill was just 20 when he played in the immortal 1973 cup final. His career peaked at that point as he didn’t make it after his ‘big’ move to top flight Manchester City. Later on in his career he ended up at Hull City before leaving for Hong Kong after the club fell into receivership. Perhaps better known these days for being part of the ‘Three Legends’ phone-in which has recently been resurrected.

2 – Tony Norman

Norman was a deceptively tall keeper, but didn’t exactly fill the goal. Not that this would prove to be a problem for him, making 226 consecutive appearances for Hull City (a club record) and exceeding 600 appearances for both clubs. Norman helped us to promotion in 1990 (which subsequently ended in agonising relegation the following season) and excelled in the 1992 FA Cup run, which ultimately ended in defeat. We would not have made that final if it wasn’t for his brilliance. His move from Hull to Sunderland was in exchange for Iain Hesford, who exceeded 100 appearances for both clubs.

1 – Raich Carter

Could there have been anyone else at number 1? Granted, he was of an era far too long ago for the majority of Sunderland fans to have any memories of his playing career. In his eight years on Wearside he became the youngest captain to win the top flight division (just 22 years old) in 1936 and was part of our 1937 FA Cup winning side too. He amassed an incredible 129 goals for us. Carter didn’t fair too badly with the Tigers either, scoring 57 league goals before ending his career with them and taking over as manager – where he went on to sign Don Revie, who later also played for Sunderland. Both cities have acknowledged the supreme feats he reached for their local clubs, in Sunderland we have the Raich Carter Centre whilst Hull named a road after him. Carter died in 1994 after a stroke.

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