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Match Preview: Sunderland v Mansfield Town

Sunderland take a break from League One action this weekend as we begin our FA Cup campaign once again in the First Round. Mansfield Town are the opponents - here’s all the info you need ahead of kick-off!

Soccer - FA Cup - Third Round - Sunderland v Leeds United - Stadium of Light

Sunderland v Mansfield Town

Emirates FA Cup - 1st Round

Stadium of Light

Kick-Off: 3.00pm - Saturday 7th November 2020


Match Coverage

TV/Stream: Full live match coverage available via www.safc.com

Radio: Full live match commentary available via BBC Newcastle (not online)

Don’t forget to follow the blow-by-blow account of the game on the Roker Report Twitter feed (@RokerReport) and check out the player ratings after the full-time whistle at www.RokerReport.com!


For the first time in seventeen years, Sunderland and Mansfield Town once again face one another in a cup competition. Unlike last time when the two clubs met in the League Cup First Round, this time it will be the First Round of the FA Cup.

Sunderland will no doubt use the fixture to give key players a much-needed break from the relentless League One schedule, and provide opportunities to those players who have been knocking on the manager’s door in recent weeks.

Mansfield Town will be viewing the fixture as a means to kick start their season after sacking manager Graham Coughlan at the end of October after nine games without a win.

Caretaker boss Richard Cooper has so far drawn at home to Walsall followed by another draw away to Bolton and has steadied the ship for what looks increasingly likely to be a job taken by Nigel Clough in the not-too-distant future.

Sunderland v Ipswich Town - Sky Bet League One
Grant Leadbitter celebrating Sunderland’s winning goal against Ipswich Town
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Getty Images

Sunderland Team News

If trying to get inside Phil Parkinson’s head before a League One fixture is difficult then predicting how much he will change the line-up for an FA Cup First Round tie with a side struggling in League Two is nigh-on impossible.

As much as I would prefer Bailey Wright to be given a rest, I can see the manager keeping him at the back with two of the more inexperienced players alongside him. Dobson and Power need to minutes and form so will likely feature and I while I’d like to see Neil start it may be more likely he makes an appearance from the bench.

Possible XI: Matthews, Sanderson, Wright, Taylor, Diamond, Dobson, Power, McFadzean, Embleton, O’Brien, Graham


Mansfield Town Team News

In what could be Richard Cooper’s final game in charge, depending on how hands on new manager Nigel Clough will be 24 hours into the new job, he could well be going all out to claim a big scalp in the FA Cup, so will possibly go with as strong a team as is possible.

The squad will no doubt be looking to impress ahead of a new era for the Stags. Look out for Premier League experience in the form of Nicky Maynard and Jordan Bowery as well as ex-Newcastle United man James Perch.

Possible XI: Stech, Gordon, Rawson, Perch, Benning, Maris, Lapslie, Charsley, McLaughlin, Bowery, Maynard

Nigel Clough was appointed as the new manager of Mansfield Town only 24 hours before kick-off against Sunderland
mansfieldtown.net

Last Time We Met...

Tuesday 12th August 2003: League Cup, 1st Round

Mansfield Town 1 - 2 Sunderland (Kyle (OG) 89’ - Artell (OG) 18’, Kyle 90’)

Sunderland: Poom, Williams (Wright), Clark, Babb, Gray (Oster), Piper, Whitley, Thornton, Kilbane, Flo (Kyle), Stewart Substitutes not used: Ingham, Thirlwell

Mansfield Town: Pilkington, Hassell, Clarke, Curtis (Day), Artell, Dimech, Lawrence, Williamson, Christie (White), Mendes, Corden (MacKenzie) Substitutes not used: White, Disley

Attendance: 5,665


Match Betting

The bookmakers clearly think Sunderland are favourites at 4/11 and have a Mansfield victory at 13/2 and 4/1 that they take us to a replay.

For a correct score, a close 1-0 victory for Sunderland is on offer at 24/5 and a victory by a more comfortable margin such as 2-0 is 9/2 with a 3-0 at 7/1. Mansfield to get the only goal of the game and win 1-0 is priced at 20/1.

Despite question marks over who Phil Parkinson might rest, Charlie Wyke is favourite to open the scoring for Sunderland once again and is available at 11/4, closely followed by Chris Maguire and Danny Graham at 7/2.

In terms of the player who might come into the side, Jack Diamond and Will Grigg are both 4/1, and for an outside bet with a little more value, Dan Neil is 12/1 to get the first goal.

Swindon Town v Sunderland - Sky Bet League One
Could Jack Diamond score the opening goal for Sunderland?
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Getty Images

Match Prediction

Even though we are expecting a much different Sunderland starting line-up to what we’ve seen recently, Mansfield are one of two sides without a win in League Two so far this season so we should be expecting a routine win.

Sunderland 2 - 0 Mansfield Town