THIS is more than a game for Sunderland. It’s a chance for redemption after years of chronic underperformance.
It’s a chance for a trophy for the first time in over four decades.
It’s a chance to become legends upon Wearside – and it’s a chance that must not be squandered.
Just as the Black Cats’ good record against Man City counts for nowt, the Citizens’ attacking reputation should also be treated with a healthy disdain.
It’s all about who adapts best to the occasion.
The Mackems team is not hard to pick and I predict with over 90 per cent accuracy that the staring X1 will be Mannone, Bardsley, O’Shea, Brown, Alonso, Johnson, Ki, Cattermole, Colback, Giaccherini (or Larsson); with Borini up front.
Whatever team Poyet picks, they must start quickly, close down, be mentally tough, look to counter attack and show little respect for their opponents’ reputation.
The Wearsiders should learn from the most feared team in the world; the SAS, and my ‘Sunderland Attack Strategy’ is simple: ‘Who Dares Wins.’
Poyet claims that he doesn’t want a statute outside the ground for their cup exploits, but if they win, the Red & White army will revere them for ever – immortality beckons.
Prediction: Sunderland 1 Man City 0