Gary Rowell column - Let’s see what Sunderland are made of against Arsenal

Danny Welbeck
Danny Welbeck
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WE’LL find out what Sunderland are made of this Saturday when Arsenal come to the Stadium of Light.

It’s always a big occasion when one of the Champions League teams come to town, and with Sunderland’s confidence likely to be fragile, that can only make it a very difficult game.

But Arsenal haven’t really got into top gear this season and have problems of their own with key players out through injury, only scrambled a late draw in their last game at home to Hull.

Despite their injury list, whatever team Arsene Wenger puts out, it won’t alter the Arsenal style of play.

Sunderland will know it’s more than likely that the Gunners will have more of the ball, but that on its own doesn’t win football matches.

Possession without an end product is pointless and if Arsenal have a fault it’s that sometimes they can over-play and have a tendency to take one pass too many.

It’s important that Sunderland keep their team shape and discipline far better than they did against Southampton.

If Arsenal pull the Sunderland defenders out of position, we’ll probably be on the end of another heavy defeat.

But Gus Poyet will be looking to get at Arsenal and cause problems for their back four, which isn’t always watertight.

The Arsenal fans themselves have been clamouring for Wenger to buy a dominant centre-back, so Sunderland must pressure on the defence and show no fear.

Danny Welbeck will get a good reception from the Sunderland fans after his successful loan spell on Wearside, and will be a big danger for Arsenal.

But our fans will be far more interested to see how the Sunderland players react to last weekend’s defeat and how they go about trying to redeem themselves.