Sunderland travel to Bolton Wanderers on Saturday. The home side are presently rooted to the bottom of the table. An 11-point deduction at the beginning of the season had them chasing others right from the start. However, it soon got worse.
The club were under serious threat of going out of business and so far this season have managed to collect just two points. Their latest was in their last game against Oxford United. With new players settling in and a game behind them which didn’t end in defeat, Sunderland cannot be complacent in order to return home with three points.
Sunderland Cannot Be Complacent in Bolton Trip
League One Whipping Boys
Having lost many players over the summer, Bolton were forced to play many youngsters. Unfortunately for them, they were playing against experienced professionals. Conceding five goals became almost the norm as they conceded 23 goals in their first six matches. Their latest hammering was away at Rotherham last weekend where they were beaten 6-1.
Turning a Corner?
When all seemed lost, a takeover was agreed just before deadline day. New Manager Keith Hill immediately set to work on bringing in new players. In the end, nine players were signed. Three of them former Sunderland players. Liam Bridcutt, Will Buckley and Daryl Murphy could all feature against their old club.
Due to the number of players coming in at such short notice, it would take time for them to gel as a team. After the defeat at Rotherham, Bolton were unlucky not to win against Oxford on Tuesday night.
That point, and performance may be a turning point in their season. With minus 10 points and being firmly rooted to the bottom of the table, Wanderers need a lot of luck on their side. Sunderland will be hoping to follow the likes of Ipswich Town by recording a convincing win.
Black Cats Looking to Bounce Back
Sunderland faced Rotherham in midweek. After an excellent start where they scored after just 31 seconds, they ended the game frustrated and with just a point. After a first-half penalty miss by Aiden McGeady, Rotherham were the better side.
On the Rotherham game, manager Jack Ross said: “The harsh reality is for us we need to keep clean sheets. We are ten games into the season now. Up to now we haven’t done so. That buck and responsibility always stops with me.”
The Black Cats currently lie in fourth place, four points off top spot and with a game in hand. Three points, goals and a good performance will get Sunderland back on track after a slight blip of one win in three games.
Maguire to Return to Starting Eleven?
Fan Favourite Chris Maguire dropped to the bench against Rotherham to the surprise of many. Captain Grant Leadbitter was also replaced. Jack Ross explained that Maguire, who missed the defeat at Peterborough with an ankle injury was a doubt for the Accrington game last Saturday.
Maguire played in the victory but Jack Ross felt two games in such a short space of time was too risky. Maguire came on a substitute on Tuesday; however, he was unable to help his team in his usual way.
Ross may decide to recall both Maguire and Leadbitter to the starting eleven in what could be a tough game. However, if the Black Cats are on form, a convincing victory could theirs.
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