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Main » 2013 » March » 17 » Premier League: Sunderland - Norwich

Premier League: Sunderland - Norwich

premier leagueWith their six-game winless streak seeing them increasingly flirt with the drop, the Black Cats are in need of a result against a Canaries side on the verge of sealing survival
Martin O’Neill will be desperate to return to winnings ways after his side’s dismal 2-1 defeat to basement-dwellers QPR on Saturday extended Sunderland’s winless streak to six games.

The return of Tottenham loanee Danny Rose (hamstring) will no doubt provide Sunderland with a significant boost, particularly if the left-back can recapture the glittering form he displayed earlier in the season. 

Target man Connor Wickham is back in contention for the hosts after returning from his loan spell at Sheffield Wednesday, but is unlikely to displace either Danny Graham or Steven Fletcher at the helm of the attack.

Meanwhile, Norwich are expected to field a similar team to the side that were held to a frustrating stalemate at home by Southampton last time out, with the exception of Anthony Pilkington (hamstring).

After coming on for Pilkington last week, Wes Hoolahan will start in place of his Irish compatriot, but Elliot Bennett will also be in contention. 

The clash comes too soon for Norway international Alex Tettey and Andrew Surman (both knee), while Mark Bunn remains in goal ahead of John Ruddy (thigh).
Sunderland have conceded ten goals in their last five matches.
The home side have scored the lowest proportion of headed goals - six per cent - in the Premier League this season.
The eleven league goals scored by Steven Fletcher (pictured right) have been directly responsible for 73% of Sunderland’s total points tally this season. Fletcher is 15/1 with bet365 to score the only goal in a 1-0 win for Sunderland on Sunday.
The Black Cats were imperious in last season’s meeting as they stormed to a 3-0 victory at the Stadium of Light, with Frazier Campbell, Stephane Sessegnon and Norwich’s Danny Ayala (own goal) the scorers.
Norwich have failed to score in six of their last eight matches.
The visitors won just one of their last ten games and have claimed just one point in their last five outings away from home.
The Canaries have triumphed just once on the road all season, beating Swansea in a 4-3 belter at the Liberty Stadium.
Apart from Serie A's Torino, Norwich have ground out more 0-0 draws (six) than any other team in in the top five European Leagues this season.
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