JACK RODWELL missed the Wear-Tyne derby through injury, as Dick Advocaat made three changes for his opening home game in charge of Sunderland.
Rodwell was ruled out through a hamstring problem, with Lee Cattermole taking the £10million midfielder’s place in the starting XI after completing a two-game ban.
Santiago Vergini replaced the injured Wes Brown at centre-half, while Billy Jones was preferred to Anthony Reveillere at right-back.
Newcastle made just one change with Jonas Gutierrez coming in for Vurnon Anita.
SUNDERLAND: Pantilimon, Jones, O’Shea, Vergini, van Aanholt, Cattermole, Larsson, Gomez, Wickham, Defoe, Fletcher. Subs: Mannone, Bridcutt, Johnson, Reveillere, Graham, Coates, Buckley.
NEWCASTLE: Krul, Taylor, Williamson, Janmaat, Colback, Gutierrez, Sissoko, Gouffran, Ameobi, Cabella, Perez. Subs: Elliot, Anita, Obertan, Riviere, Abeid, Armstrong, Kemen.