The first of four consecutive home games begins this weekend against the in form Fulham. Roy Hodgson has made Fulham a very difficult team to play against, and they have also done excellently in Europe as they beat the current holders on Thursday.
Steve Bruce has called on every fabric of Sunderland AFC to get behind the team, staff, management in order to get out of this rut we find ourselves in at the moment.
This game is one of the biggest for a while but could be followed by an even bigger one against Bolton if we fail to get three points on Sunday.
Vital Quotes: Steve Bruce
Bruce said: ‘We have got to be realistic, we are in amongst the bottom lot, that’s for sure.
‘But if we get a couple of results, it’s a different issue. Then you start thinking about ‘can we catch one of them? Can we catch a Blackburn or a Stoke?
‘If we can get a win on Sunday, the whole thing changes round again.
‘We just need that first win. If we can get that first win, I am convinced we will be okay.
‘We have got seven out of the next 12 at home, so we have got a very, very good opportunity to still salvage our season.
‘We still hope we can finish in the top ten rather than keep looking over our shoulder, which everybody is at the moment.’
Sunderland Team News:
Cattermole has been issuing the rallying cries from the squad to show he is up for the fight after missing the last game through suspension.
Andy Reid and Henderson will miss the game due to injuries but are hopeful to be back in the next few weeks.
Player to watch: Cattermole
We miss him at times in the big games and we will need him on Sunday to break up Fulham and push us forward. Lorik Cana has been dreadful at times but he can use Cattermole to stop Fulham and hopefully avoid a yellow card that he seriously hunts down every game.
Cattermole needs to keep his head and avoid any more red cards and focus on keeping Sunderland in the Premier league this season.
Fulham Team News:
In form England candidate Bobby Zamora will miss the clash due to picking up an achilles injury in Europe.
Andrew Johnson, Clint Dempsey and John Pantsil are out, but cup-tied duo Nicky Shorey and Stefano Okaka may return
Player to watch: Schwarzer
This ex Boro keeper will hopefully be tested a lot on Sunday by Bent and Jones but he is still a great goalkeeper. He was fantastic in Europe on Thursday and we need to hope we have the ammo to get past him to get the vital three points for safety.
Match Facts & Stats
The west London club have won only nine of their last 89 Premier League away trips.
Sunderland are one of only two clubs not to have won a Premier League game in 2010 – the other being Portsmouth.
Sunderland 1 – 0 Fulham
Sunderland face Bolton on 9th March at home.