Preview: Stoke City vs. Sunderland

Preview: Stoke City vs. Sunderland
© PA Photos
Sports Mole previews Stoke City's match with Sunderland at the Britannia Stadium.

Stoke City play host to Sunderland on Saturday as they look to return to winning ways after their 4-2 defeat to Manchester United last weekend.

The Potters have only won one of their last six matches but as well as United, that run included Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City.

Manager Tony Pulis may opt to return to his tried-and-trusted 4-4-2 home formation against Sunderland with Matthew Etherington returning to the side in place of Dean Whitehead.

Sunderland have lost only to Premier League champions Manchester City this season and they will be hoping to continue that run with a result against Stoke.

The Black Cats drew 1-1 with Newcastle United in the Tyne-Wear derby last weekend, but manager Martin O'Neill may decide to recall full-back Phil Bardsley to strengthen the makeshift defence that began last week's game.

Bardsley may replace Jack Colback, with Craig Gardner returning to central midfield.

Recent form

Stoke City: DDLWDL

Sunderland: DDDWLD

Possible starting lineups:

Stoke City: Begovic; Cameron, Huth, Wilson, Shawcross; Nzonzi, Adam, Etherington, Kightly; Walters, Crouch

Sunderland: Mignolet; O'Shea, Cuellar, Rose, Bardsley; Larsson, Gardner, Johnson, McClean, Sessegnon; Fletcher

Sports Mole says: 2-1

Craig Gardner, John Terry
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