Sunderland vs Liverpool statistics

Sunderland's Connor Wickham

Sunderland's Connor Wickham

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Sunderland (20) v Liverpool (5)

Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher will be sidelined for up to six weeks with a shoulder injury.

Defender John O’Shea, who came off with a niggle during Tuesday night’s 2-0 Capital One Cup victory over Peterborough, is expected to be fit and midfielder Lee Cattermole could also figure after coming through that game unscathed. Full-back Phil Bardsley is close to returning from a broken bone in his foot.

Liverpool defender Daniel Agger is set to return after being left out of the midweek Capital One Cup defeat against Manchester United because of a side strain. Right-back Glen Johnson (ankle) is still out injured. Midfielder Joe Allen (hamstring) is absent while Philippe Coutinho is still recovering from a shoulder operation.

Last season: Liverpool 3 Sunderland 0, Sunderland 1 Liverpool 1

Last five league matches: Sunderland L D L L L; Liverpool W W W D L

Top scorers: Connor Wickham & Emanuele Giaccherini (Sunderland) 2; Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool) 6

Match Odds: H 4-1 A 4-6 D 12-5

Referee: Howard Webb (S Yorkshire).