Millwall (H) 3.12.22
Solid as they are every year, Millwall are currently 6th in the Championship, and a win could take them into 4th. A big, physical team that can hurt any opposition, it will be a big challenge for Sunderland to deal with their aerial presence.
One to Watch: Zian Flemming
Having scored a hattrick in the Lions’ final game before the break, the former Jong Ajax player has shown his class this season so far.
He is finding form at the right time and has eight goals already this season.
West Bromwich Albion (H) 12.12.22
West Brom have had a really disappointing season so far, and were bottom of the league until they sacked Steve Bruce in October. Since the appointment of Carlos Corberan, the Baggies have won three of four games, including three clean sheets.
One to Watch: Brandon Thomas-Asante
In an otherwise uninspiring season so far for the Baggies, Brandon Asante-Thomas has impressed since signing from Salford in the summer. He has scored one of the goals of the season and has been a real livewire in the West Brom attack. He is a bag of energy and will be a handful for our defenders under the lights at the SOL.
Hull City (A) 17.12.22
A season that has been overshadowed by their new ownership, Hull are 20th (at the time of writing) and have recently appointed Liam Rosenior as their new boss. He is an exciting appointment and will have been happy that the mid-season break came when it did, so that he could try and install his key messages, without the pressure of games.
One to Watch: Jean Michael-Seri
Seri was an integral part in Fulham’s Championship winning side last season, and many people were shocked when his next move was Hull City, no more than a year after he had been linked with a multi-million pound move to Barcelona. His calmness in midfield helps both defence and attack and he has the ability to chip in with a goal here and there.
Blackburn Rovers (H) 26.12.22
The first game which involves a team we have already played, payback will be on the mind of the Sunderland players on Boxing Day. After a 2-0 defeat to Rovers back in October, Blackburn now sit third, and still, somehow, haven’t drawn a game.
One to Watch: Ben Brereton Diaz
Everyone knows his class by now and he backed that up when we went to Ewood Park. A screamer from 25 yards out backed up a fantastic performance against us. The centre backs on the day will have their hands full.
Wigan Athletic (A) 28.12.22
With a new manager since beating them in October, Wigan will hope for a better December than the previous two, which saw them lose six games in eight. Kolo Toure will be looking for a quick reaction and a good start to his new life in management.
One to Watch: James McClean
After the game at the SOL, McClean will be riled up when we go to the DW at the end of the month and a riled up James McClean will mean either a top quality performance or a red card – so it will be interesting to see which McClean turns up.