Sunderland boss David Moyes prays for no more injuries as international players return

Wahbi Khazri: played 90 minutes for Tunisia against Guinea
Wahbi Khazri: played 90 minutes for Tunisia against Guinea
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David Moyes will today be keeping his fingers crossed for a safe and prompt return to Wearside of his international players.

Sunderland's players have been in action all over the world during the international break and Moyes will only get two sessions on the training field with them ahead of Saturday's vital Premier League trip to Stoke City.

The Black Cats boss has already lost one player after defender Jason Denayer joined the long injured list after coming off just after the half-hour in Belgium U21's Euro qualifier in Montenegro.

He will hope the sizeable number of Sunderland internationals who have played for their countries, or have been on bench duty, return with no bumps or strains.

Jordan Pickford watched England's 0-0 draw in Slovenia from the bench and will have marvelled how keeper Joe Hart saved the Three Lions from defeat.

John O’Shea saw little action for the Republic of Ireland. An injury-time sub in the 1-0 home win over Georgia, the veteran defender was an unused substitute in the 3-1 win over Moldova in Group D on Sunday night.

His central defensive partner in the 1-1 draw with West Brom, Lamine Kone, did see more action as he played the full 90 minutes for Ivory Coast in their 3-1 win over Mali to go top of their African World Cup qualification group.

Paddy McNair came off the bench for Northern Ireland in the 77th minute of their 4-0 Group C win over San Marino, and last night came on for the last 18 minutes of the 2-0 defeat in Hanover to defending world champions, Germany, replacing Oli Norwood.

Midfielder Didier Ndong saw a little bit more of the action as he played 76 minutes of Gabon's 0-0 home draw with Morocco in their opening World Cup qualifier.

Wide midfielder Wahbi Khazri played 90 minutes as Tunisia beat Guinea 2-0 in their Africa World Cup qualification game on Monday.

Attacking ace Duncan Watmore will return to training with a spring in his step after scoring England U21's fourth goal in a 5-0 thrashing of Bosnia-Herzegovina in Walsall last night.

So too will striker Joel Asoro after he helped Sweden clinch their place in the European U21 Championship finals. After scoring in the 3-0 win over Estonia last Thursday, the 17-year-old, a candidate for the squad for Saturday's match at Stoke, came off the bench for the last 24 minutes of Monday's 4-2 win over Croatia.