It’s a gloomy situation at Sunderland as the prospect of a season rooted in the bottom three looks not just a huge possibility but almost a certainty. David Moyes is still searching for his first league win since taking charge of Sunderland and he will hope that it comes today with the visit of Crystal Palace.
Last Sunday saw them lose 1-0 to Tottenham at White Hart Lane but the game was far less close than the scoreline suggests. Mauricio Pochettino’s men gave them a torrid time last Sunday and it’s a credit to Jordan Pickford that they come away with some level of respectability from that game. They were always going to have to work hard at White Hart Lane but Tottenham didn’t let them come up for air during what turned out to be another bleak afternoon.
Had it not been for Pickford it could have been half a dozen goals shipped but regardless of how many were conceded then it was always going to be nil at the other end. This was a side who came for a draw and left with a loss, Moyes will certainly need to rethink his approach this afternoon.
He goes up against a Crystal Palace side who come into this game off the back of successive wins and a 3 game unbeaten streak. They eased past basement side Stoke last Sunday with a 4-1 win, the only blot on the copybook was a late Marko Arnautovic goal which stopped them getting a clean sheet.
This streak of good form sees Palace currently sit 8th in the Premier League, top of a group of 5 teams all on 7 points and they will look to make that tally 10 by the end of the afternoon and with the form they are taking into this game then you wouldn’t bet against them.
You could argue that the fixture computer has been kind to them with Middlesbrough, Stoke and then Sunderland but at the end of the day you can only beat what is in front you and Alan Pardew will be hoping his side take full advantage of this run of games.
The 7 points that Palace have picked up from their last three matches will have no doubt eased the pressure on Pardew has avoids to win the Premier League managerial sack race but he knows he can’t afford to rest on his laurels. Three games without a win and the tide can soon quickly turn.
But I can’t see that being the case today as this is a Sunderland side bereft of confidence and any real discerning talent. Add the fact that Adnan Januzaj misses out through suspension after seeing red late on at White Hart Lane and you do have to wonder where the creative spark will come from. I’ll go for an away win.