Match preview: Sunderland v Arsenal

Sunderland will resume their Premier League campaign on Saturday against Arsenal at the Stadium of Light (KO 12.30pm).

The Black Cats, who are searching for their first top-flight win of the campaign, will be hoping to bounce back from their EFL Cup exit on Wednesday, with Sofiane Boufal’s wonder strike securing a narrow win for Saints.

And it was a similar story for the Lads in their last league outing at West Ham United as a positive performance was undone by Winston Reid’s stoppage-time winner.

Likewise, Arsenal endured a frustrating outing against Middlesbrough one week ago as they were held to a draw, but they did return to winning ways midweek as victory over Reading saw Arsene Wenger’s side secure a place in the EFL Cup quarter finals.

Despite the draw against Boro the Gunners have enjoyed a positive start to the season and they currently sit joint-top of the Premier League.

Only Manchester City top the Londoners – on goal difference – with Wenger’s side also topping their UEFA Champions League group as they continue to battle on all fronts.

On the road they are unbeaten in the Premier League since February but the Black Cats enjoyed success in their last meeting, with the Gunners held to a goalless draw at the SoL in April.

John O’Shea and Lamine Kone formed the centre back pairing that day and they’re likely to do so this weekend, with the former rested for the Lads’ trip to the south coast.

Steven Pienaar and Jermain Defoe, who both came off the bench, are also expected to be recalled.

On-loan Manchester United winger Adnan Januzaj is also pushing for a place in the squad having returned to training, but David Moyes admits the game could come too soon for fellow Belgian Jason Denayer.

Vito Mannone, Lee Cattermole, Jan Kirchhoff, Seb Larsson and Fabio Borini remain unavailable.

Arsenal will be without Lucas Perez with Nacho Monreal, Santi Cazorla and Theo Walcott facing late fitness checks, but Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud are available.

OTHER INFO

Ticket information for Saturday’s game is available by clicking here.

If you can’t make the game, then don’t fear because we have every base covered with extensive coverage on safc.com and on Twitter by following @SunderlandAFC.

Nick Barnes and Gary Bennett will also be LIVE on safc.com from around 11.30am.

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