Martin O'Neill was boosted by the fitness of Steven Fletcher and Danny Rose, both of whom were deemed fit enough to play today at Southampton.
Phil Bardsley's injury also doesn't seem as bad as first thought, but could only make the bench as O'Neill puts out a strong and very balanced looking side. Bardsley is joined on the bench by Titus Bramble as he makes way for Rose, with Cuellar returning to central defence.
Sunderland (4-4-1-1): Simon Mignolet; Craig Gardner, John O'Shea, Carlos Cuellar, Danny Rose; Adam Johnson, Seb Larsson, Jack Colback, James McClean; Stephane Sessegnon, Steven Fletcher
Substitutes: Keiren Westwood, Titus Bramble, Connor Wickham, Fraizer Campbell, David Vaughan, James McFadden, Phil Bardsley.
Meanwhile Southampton gaffer Nigel Adkins gives starts to Emmanuel Mayuka in attack with Ricky Lambert and the tricky Gaston Ramirez. Another boon for Sunderland is that Adam Lallana isn't fit, and Kelvin Davis starts in goal for the home side.
Southampton (4-2-3-1): Kelvin Davis; Nathanniel Clyne, Jose Fonte, Maya Yoshida, Luke Shaw; Jack Cork, Morgan Schneiderlein; Emmanuel Mayuka, Jason Puncheon, Gaston Ramirez; Rickie Lambert.
Substitutes: Artur Boruc, Jos Hooiveld, Steven Davis, Jay Rodriguez, Guly Do Prado, Frazer Richardson, Steve De Ridder.
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