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Sunderland v Chelsea Preview: Blues at full-strength bar Nathan Ake

Chelsea today make the trip to the north-east coast in search of a 10th consecutive Premier League win over Sunderland at the Stadium of ...


Chelsea today make the trip to the north-east coast in search of a 10th consecutive Premier League win over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.

The Black Cats are in pursuit of a third successive victory over the Blues in all competitions and were also the last side to beat us in our own backyard.

Although the 2-1 defeat ended Jose Mourinho’s 77-match winning streak at Stamford Bridge and severely dented our title hopes last season, the shock result is unlikely to be playing on his mind ahead of today’s tea-time kick-off.

Our last league meeting in Wearside saw the Blues edge a 4-3 thriller in December last year and, given the Blues’ current form and quality in comparison to Sunderland, we should be able to make lighter work of our hosts this time around.

Chelsea have bagged 12 goals and conceded just three in their last five outings, a handsome record in contrast to our 14th-placed opponents, who have failed to score in five of their last eight Premier League fixtures.

Sunderland Form

(D) Leicester 0-0 Sunderland
(D) Sunderland 1-1 Everton
(W) Crystal Palace 1-3 Sunderland
(L) Sunderland 0-2 Arsenal
(L) Southampton 8-0 Sunderland

Chelsea Form

(W) Schalke 0-5 Chelsea
(W) Chelsea 2-0 West Brom
(W) Liverpool 1-2 Chelsea
(D) Maribor 1-1 Chelsea
(W) Chelsea 2-1 Queens Park Rangers

Sunderland Injury News

Midfielder Ricky Alvarez has returned to training and could make his first appearance since injuring his knee in September, while Emmanuel Giacherini and Patrick van Aanholt are ruled out until at least December. The good news for Gus Poyet is Sebastian Coates is fit to return after recovering from a calf problem.

Chelsea Injury News

Jose Mourinho is blessed with a fully fit squad for the clash in Wearside bar Nathan Ake. The young defender, who is yet to make a league appearance this season, returned from international duty with the Netherlands Under-21s with a hamstring injury is expected to be out of action until 13 December.

Probable Starting Lineups

Sunderland: Pantilimon, Vergini, O’Shea, Brown, Revelliere, Cattermole, Larsson, Gomez, Johnson, Wickham, Fletcher

Chelsea: Courtois, Ivanovic, Terry, Cahill, Azpilicueta, Matic, Fabregas, Willian, Oscar, Hazard, Costa

Prediction

Although our fantastic run of form will eventually come to an end, there’s little to suggest it will be today. With a full-strength squad to pick from against an off-course Sunderland outfit, I see Chelsea taking this one 3-1 win.

What are your predictions? Do you think we can notch our 10th win away to Sunderland in as many games?

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