One of the most important games of the Premier League in terms of survival will take place right after the international break when Sunderland welcome Hull City to the Stadium of Light on 19th November 2016. While this season has surprised many experts with the early performances of some of the clubs who were expected to do a lot better, it can be safely said that everyone expected Hull City and Sunderland to be where they are at the moment.
Hull City and Sunderland both had a very tough pre-season. While the Tigers were experiencing issues like the departure of manager Steve Bruce, serious injuries to key players and a potential Chinese takeover which severely hampered the club’s dealings in the transfer market, the Black Cats were experiencing more of the same with the departure of their manager and the problems in the transfer market.
Despite a positive start which included 2 wins out of 2, the Tigers have tumbled down the table with 6 consecutive losses in the league. The shocking run ended last week when they beat Southampton in what was their first Premier League victory since August.
It is interesting to note that both the teams have won their last game which was unexpected. David Moyes would have been a man relieved when Sunderland got their first win to make it 5 points from 11 games, the same as Swansea City, another team in trouble. There isn’t much of a difference between Hull and Sunderland in terms of goals scored and conceded, with both being equally poor but with 3 wins, the Tigers do have a 5-point gap lead over their opponents.
Hull do have a pretty decent first XI which can offer some serious test for most of the teams and will have the edge on Saturday being the away team. Pressure will be on Sunderland to make use of their good result in the last game to take all three points at home.
While the Tigers would also be hoping for something similar in terms of outcome they lack the options on the bench to change things around when needed, much like their opposition. However, Sunderland are arguably a bit better in terms of having options on the bench than Hull.
Without a doubt, it will be a very cautious game where none of the teams would be willing to take the risk that might end up costing them the match. The fans of both the teams would hope for a positive result as a loss in the tie can seriously make things worse for either of the two.