Well, we did alright against Stoke! Michael even predicted the scorecast but unfortunately the dog ate his betting slip…shame. Martin managed to pull out a cheeky 1-0er too and leads the way. Anyway, round 3, three points for the correct score and one point for the correct result. No prizes for guessing which score line is the most popular in the We Are Wearside camp…
Martin (MartinW) – 4 points
I hate predicting derby games - always have, always will. There are plenty of reasons why, in theory, we should be relatively confident - a good transfer window, good form, confidence reinstated, Poyet's system really beginning to pay off now, and the skunks being without their best central defender (injured), their best midfielder (sold), and their best forward (suspended). Yet we know that logic doesn't really come into it, and the fact that we go into an away derby in the best shape since we got beaten 5-1 is, in the perverse logic of derby week, almost a worry. Hopefully amid the hurly burly of the derby, the likes of Ki and Johnson will find time to flourish, and their players will show the lack of passion they have shown in recent derbies. I'm still refusing to predict a win, though!
Newcastle 0-0 Sunderland
Michael (MFBriggs) - 3pts
Right then, here we go again ladies and gentlemen, the Tyne and Wear derby. A game where fingernails get chewed to the skin, tummies do more tumbles than a gymnast and, well, there's bragging rights to be collected! Fabio Borini's strike was enough to bag three points earlier in the season and I feel that we may bag three more.
3-0 under 'him' was fantastic and although I can't quite see us winning that emphatically, another narrow victory stands in very good stead, particularly with the new signings to boost the squad.
Newcastle 1-2 Sunderland (Johnson, Altidore)
Gary (Gmac) - 2 points
It would be the icing on the cake of what has been the best week and half I can remember as a Sunderland fan. Let's not forget its significance to our league position with Hull City visiting next weekend. Don Vito will no doubt have some work to do but you'd fancy him and our centre backs to get the better of such a patched up attacking line up. Can we do the double? It's a cracking opportunity and given our recent fortunes, I don't think we'll let it slip.
Newcastle 1-2 Sunderland [of course]
FulwellEnder - 1 point
Whilst there are always plenty of dogs in Newcastle on a Saturday night I'd hope that police horses are kept away from the city centre tomorrow. Firstly, because I don't fancy having my foot stood on (again) and also because Northumbria Police will have a riot on their hands (again).
Make no mistake about this. Good will conquer evil. Red will conquer black and Wear will conquer Tyne.
So often in recent years we have approached the game in disarray but that honour falls on them now. Cabaye has been sold, nobody has been brought in and a Wearside Wembley shadow has engulfed Castle Greyskull.
We have been in good form away from home and they are going to really come at us hard tomorrow which should help us hit them on the counter attack. After not playing on Wednesday I'd like to see Cattermole back in front of the back four then it's time for Bridcutt to make his debut. Ki does more damage further forward and Colback and Larsson together just doesn't work. Altidore was good during the week so hand him a start and let him shut the critics up. Fingers crossed.
Newcastle 1-3 Sunderland (Johnson, Ki and Scocco)
Hate predicting derbies, so I've taken the easy route out and gone for a draw. If Cattermole isn't playing, hopefully Bridcutt will make a starting debut, since the lack of a midfield presence was showing all too well in the tight win against Stoke, and such deficiencies always stand out in games against Newcastle. Adam Johnson to continue his fine form of late, and maybe one or two scrappy goals along the way. Scocco could well be the unknown quantity in our arsenal if he is used.
Newcastle 2-2 Sunderland
Reece (RGHanson93) - 1 point
We’re arguably the favourites going into this one, and I don’t like it! A lot of signs point to a Sunderland win, our great form, key players missing for them, but then that usually means we get beat. Far from the week long nerves that almost cripples Wearside, the derby has been lost amongst Wembley fever, but I’m saying the good old scoreline of 2-1 to the Mackems.
After seeing classics in the Merseyside and Midlands derby’s this week, the Tyne-Wear one won’t be as grand in terms of performance, with a tight, scrappy game as usual. I’m saying Adam Johnson, after another man winning performance midweek, to break the deadlock. Phil Dowd is the referee, so they’ll equalise from a controversial penalty early in the second half. Now then, Liam Bridcutt was one of the first names linked with a January move back in October when Gus took over, and it took until Deadline Day to tie it up. How incredible would it be to make your Sunderland debut and score the winner in the (now second) biggest game of the year? A late, late winner from Bridcutt to silence the horse punchers. You heard it here first!
Newcastle 1-2 Sunderland
Connor (conkenobi) - 1 point
Feels like an age since I've suffered the agony of losing to Newcastle that I sort of feel like I would be okay with it if we did; after years of suffering it seems as if the pain is missed somewhat. I can't predict the result, how can you? I never saw 3-0 coming and neither did my neighbours as I screamed the walls down of my house. We're in a great position though, we're doing well at the minute and the loss of Cabaye will hit them hard.
Newcastle 2-2 Sunderland
John (JohnC) - 1 point
The best news heading into the derby is that Lee Cattermole lost his satnav and didn't end up at Stoke (does anyone know the best way to drive there?) But it is (partly) offset by him being unlikely to play at St James's. If Wednesday's lacklustre performance, despite winning, showed anything it was how weak Sunderland's midfield is without him. Even Ki Sung-Yueng had an off-day. Gus Poyet has said that he will have no hesitation in handing new signing Liam Bridcutt a baptism of fire and it could well be that if he plays. He has no Premier League experience, let alone the intensity of the rivalry.
Much has been said that the Mags will not be the same with the departure of Yohan Cabaye to Paris St-Germain. Loic Remy (suspension) and Fabricio Coloccini (injury) will also be big misses. They just about even up the teams (would have quaked otherwise). Derbies are notorious to predict but I will be more than happy with a point. Despite the form of Adam Johnson and Fabio Borini, the lack of firepower must be a priority to resolve if Sunderland is going to perform a Houdini escape from relegation. Whether Ignacio Scocco helps remains to be seen. Most badly needed is Steven Fletcher back at his best. I really can't see any dirty knees slides but hopefully Jozy Altidore proves he is not quite as barren as long-suffering Danny Graham.
Newcastle 2-2 Sunderland
If you had said to even the most optimistic Sunderland fan before our last visit to SJP that we would win two on the bounce they would have been amazed...three?! To put it into context it is 90 years since we last managed that, in 1923. So is this the team to do it? It would be quite a remarkable feat if we did, especially given that we have been well below them in the league every time we've played. It's been an odd build up to the derby with fans still dreaming about Wembley, it's the first time in a long while that the derby doesn't feel like the biggest game of the season. But it's still big. The transfer window has also played it's part and we seem to have done reasonable business on that front. It seems made for someone to become and instant hero and hopefully it's someone in red and white (I've a sneaky feeling for Alonso). I'm trying to be a bit more optimistic after my last two predictions but I just can't see us winning again so I'll go for a draw.
Newcastle 1-1 Sunderland
I hate to play the sceptic but you've got to admire some of the stuff the mags have played this season. Furthermore, the Sunderland team will probably be running out of steam as new signings are yet to be integrated. I really hope I'm wrong but I'll go for a gallant performance from us, a very feisty game with two red cards and goals in the 72nd and 88th minute. Seeing Scocco make his debut would be nice but overall I have a feeling this derby is going to be one to forget on Wearside.
Newcastle 2-0 Sunderland