Match preview: Sunderland v GIllingham

Sunderland will round off a run of three-straight home matches this evening when Gillingham visit Wearside.

Taking on The Gils at the Stadium of Light, kick-off 7:45pm, the Black Cats will be looking to put behind them a frustrating run of three consecutive draws.

That’s left Jack Ross’ side fourth in League One and with work to do if they are to apply some pressure on the top two, as the race for promotion to the Championship cranks up another level. 

Unbeaten in their last 12 matches, Ross has seen Sunderland’s progress stutter of late after drawing seven of their last nine games. 

However, while the pressure cranks up as the games become less, the Black Cats remain the only side in the top four tiers of English football to have scored in every league game (39).

Added to that, Ross’ men have lost just two league games and remain unbeaten on home soil – although, that looked in jeopardy on Friday night as Accrington Stanley seized a 2-0 lead on Wearside early in the second 45. 

But if we’ve learnt one thing this season then it’s never to write off this Sunderland side, and they roared back with two goals – from George Honeyman and Aiden McGeady - in seven minutes to snatch a point and maintain their impressive home record.

Tonight’s opponents, Gillingham, arrive on Wearside with their own battles to fight as they sit just three points clear of the drop zone.

While they remain five places above Shrewsbury Town in 22nd, Steve Lovell’s side know they must build on Saturday’s 1-0 win over Scunthorpe United if they’re to give themselves some real breathing space.

If The Gils are to do that, though, they will have to improve defensively as they’ve kept just two clean sheets in their last 14 away league games this season, and head into tonight’s match with just one win in their last six.

There’s some doubt surrounding the fitness of Duncan Watmore while Glenn Loovens and Donald Love remain sidelined.

Gillingham, meanwhile, are hoping to have Josh Rees in contention, but will be without Ricky Holmes, Alex Lacey and captain Gabriel Zakuani.


Cash turnstiles will be in operation for tonight’s home match – full details available here.  

BBC Radio Newcastle’s Nick Barnes will be broadcasting live right here on from 7pm. 

As ever, there will be comprehensive coverage across our digital channels including’s matchday blog and live updates on Twitter via @SunderlandAFC.

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