MATTHEW Foster hopes the omens are on Sunderland’s side.
The Echo Juror has firm opinions on the team Gus Poyet should field against Newcastle on Sunday, saying:
“I’ve tried hard to not feel too downbeat going into this derby following our abysmal run so far.
“So instead I’m going for the positive route, and immersing myself in the occasion.
“They say all form goes out the window for derby games, and that’s definitely true. Last season, we went into that memorable game without a win in nine matches.
“It was also a new manager’s second game, the first being a defeat. And our new gaffer has a distinctively good record against those up the road.
“All the omens seem to be on our side!
“That’s not to say we don’t need to make changes within the ranks, however. Colback should be restored to left-back, and the complacent “O’Shea and Johnson should be shown the bench. They seem to expect to be on the team sheet, and clearly aren’t working well enough to stay there.
“Poyet needs to play a starting XI that will go out there and relish the occasion, and work their socks off from start to finish. We need a lift, and by gum this is a perfect game to get it.
“Prediction: Sunderland 2 Newcastle 1”
* Read the rest of the Echo Jury’s verdicts in today’s Sunderland Echo