Sunderland AFC news: Black Cats' promotion rivals suffer huge DOUBLE blow ahead of run-in as Joey Barton is bizarrely made favourite for Championship job

Sunderland are steadily progressing in their quest for League One promotion.

By James Copley
Monday, 29th March 2021, 7:21 am

Following a draw against Lincoln City last weekend, the Black Cats returned to winning ways against Bristol Rovers on Saturday, winning 1-0 at the Memorial Stadium.

The result means Sunderland’s fate is in their own hands with games to come against automatic promotion rivals Hull City and Peterborough United.

Indeed, Lee Johnson’s men are in the middle of a superb run, having not lost in their last 12 games in all competitions, with only one loss in their last 18.

Blackpool boss Neil Critchley.

As always, however, there’s plenty of League One news swirling around the web – here, we take a look at everything you need to know:

Joey Barton emerges as favourite for Championship job

Despite losing to Sunderland in League One on Saturday, Joey Barton is still odds on favourite to take the vacant Preston North End job.

The Bristol Rovers boss has been in the job for little more than a month, but speculation has emerged that he is the favourite to replace Alex Neil at Deepdale.

SkyBet has priced Barton up as an 8/11 favourite, ahead of his former Newcastle United teammate Nicky Butt and Hull City boss Grant McCann.

The one-time England international has so far been unable to turn the Gas’ fortunes around with the club facing relegation after four consecutive defeats over the past two-weeks.

Promotion rivals Blackpool dealt major blow ahead of run-in

Sunderland’s promotion rivals Blackpool have suffered a major blow in their own quest for promotion.

The Blackpool Gazette reports that the Tangerines’ injury crisis has gone from bad to worse with the news Matty Virtue and CJ Hamilton will miss the remainder of the season.

A scan has shown Virtue tore his ACL during last weekend’s 2-0 win at Oxford United.

Hamilton, meanwhile, broke his metersaral during the goalless draw against Fleetwood Town, not long after returning from a lengthy lay-off with a hamstring injury.

Sunderland are due to play Blackpool twice in the run-in as the Black Cats aim for automatic promotion.

Loanee Elliot Embleton will be unavailable to play against his parent club.

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