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THREE CHANGES! Is this the starting XI that Sunderland will put out against Doncaster today?

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Is this the Sunderland line-up for today’s game? We’re predicting THREE CHANGES - though fear Parkinson will persist with his overly-defensive tactical system.

Sunderland v Bolton Wanderers - Sky Bet League One Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

GK: Jon McLaughlin

In between all the horrific - justifiable - negativity of the Bolton game, big Jon managed to keep his second clean sheet of the season and made a save that was a little more akin to what we saw from him last term.

Lee Burge will find himself unlucky to be sat on the bench, but the truth is McLaughlin is, when on form, the best of the two, and he’s been a little more like himself in recent weeks.

Sunderland v Bolton Wanderers - Sky Bet League One Photo by Alex Dodd - CameraSport via Getty Images

CB: Willis CB: Ozturk CB: De Bock

I genuinely can’t believe we are persisting with this five at the back formation. I keep trying to convince myself it’s a three, but we dropped so deep against Bolton it occasionally became a back eight. Crikey.

Jordan Willis looked more comfortable than he has done in weeks on Boxing Day, whilst Ozturk is seemingly one of the first names on the team sheet in the formation.

Tom Flanagan will sit this one out with a nasty looking hamstring injury he picked up on Thursday, meaning it’s a straight decision between Laurens De Bock and Joel Lynch as his replacement - and with Lynch missing from the squad completely on Boxing Day, it’ll likely be the Belgian that starts.

Sunderland v Blackpool - Sky Bet League One Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

RM: O’Nien CM: Dobson CM: Power LM: Hume

George Dobson missed the 0-0 draw with the Trotters due to suspension but is likely to return alongside Max Power for today’s game. Grant Leadbitter will drop to the bench, with the captaincy given to Power.

Denver Hume was our only bright spark on Boxing Day and seems to be growing game by game - it’s just such a shame the rest of those around him seem to continue to regress. He’ll have more support behind him in the shape of De Bock, so hopefully Hume can continue to wreak havoc on the left.

On the right-hand side will be Mr Dependable Luke O’Nien, who seems to have reverted to a wing back of sorts after a short stint in the number ten role.

Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

RAM: Gooch LAM: Maguire

Whilst Lynden Gooch still has a tendency to hold onto the ball for too long, we look far more dangerous with him on the pitch, and he’s a welcome return to a team in desperate need of a boost.

He started on the left on Boxing Day, but he will move to his more natural right-hand side today in place of Duncan Watmore, with Chris Maguire coming back in on the left.

Sunderland v Blackpool - Sky Bet League One Photo by Alex Dodd - CameraSport via Getty Images

ST: Charlie Wyke

As long as Phil Parkinson has a hole in his backside he’ll continue with Wyke as his chosen forward, but he probably would be better placed to put someone alongside him.

Marc McNulty looked sharp when he entered the fray late on Thursday, but in a Parkinson team that likes to continue to lump the ball forward at every opportunity Wyke is a prize possession - nut after being out-jumped and out-muscled by 5ft9 Liam Bridcutt, Charlie needs to show more against Doncaster.

Sunderland v Bolton Wanderers - Sky Bet League One Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images