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Preview: Sunderland vs. Middlesbrough

Preview: Sunderland vs. Middlesbrough
© PA Photos
Sports Mole previews Sunderland's clash with Middlesbrough in the fourth round of the League Cup on Tuesday.

Local pride and a place in the fifth round of the League Cup are at stake on Tuesday when Sunderland host Middlesbrough at the Stadium of Light.

The Black Cats will head into this fixture off the back of a goalless draw at Stoke City in the Premier League on Saturday, and have lost just one competitive game so far this season.

Martin O'Neill's side defeated Milton Keynes Dons 2-0 away from home in the third round and will hope for a similar positive result on Tuesday.

However, Middlesbrough are likely to prove a difficult side to beat, especially as they have won their last four matches in the Championship.

Tony Mowbray's team got the better of Preston North End 3-1 away from home in the last round and will be upbeat about winning against their Premier League opposition in the fourth round.

There are no fresh injury concerns for either side. Scott McDonald is likely to partner Ishmael Miller in attack for the visitors.

Recent form

Sunderland: WWLDD

Middlesbrough: DWWWW

Possible starting lineups:

Sunderland: Mignolet; Rose, Gardner, O'Shea, Cuellar; Cattermole, Colback, Johnson, McClean; Larsson, Fletcher

Middlesbrough: Steele; Amougou, Friend, Hines, Parnaby; Leadbitter, McEachran, Reach, Haroun; McDonald, Miller

Sports Mole says: 2-1

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23Oxford UnitedOxford Utd9126919-105
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