MIDDLESBROUGH provides the lads with a good opportunity to get into the next round of the FA Cup. Putting aside the local rivalry, Boro fans will consider it a bigger game than we do.
Their form this year has been woeful and after losing to a team at the bottom of the Championship, they are without Thomson and former fan favourite Julio Arca due to suspension.
O’Neill finally looks close to having a fully fit squad and I’d like to see Campbell given a run-out, along with Meyler and Turner in order to give a few of the lads who have played with such desire recently, a bit of a rest.
With the disappointing news that Bendter will be out for several weeks, it’s time for Wickham to show he is a worth a place in the side and I expect him to start.
We are flying at the minute under O’Neill and given the FA Cup draw paired most Premier League sides together, this could be our year to do something in this competition.
Boro will be a decent test but I’m confident we’ll have enough quality to win.
Prediction: Sunderland 2 Boro 0
To read more Echo Jury, please see tonight’s Sunderland Echo.