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Hartlepool v Sunderland: Pre-Season Friendly

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Starting XI: Is this Tony Mowbray’s first Sunderland lineup?

The former Boro boss is expected to be in the dugout tonight. But who’ll be on the field?

Tony Mowbray took training yesterday and will be in the dugout for tonight’s game against Rotherham at the Stadium of Light following his appointment as Head Coach.

Rotherham have played three at the back all season, so I wouldn’t expect too much variation in our starting XI. In fact, I reckon we’ll be unchanged from the weekend.

Goalkeeper: Anthony Patterson

Seems Patterson’s our nailed on number one now, although it’ll be interesting to see if he gets any more competition over the coming hours.

Sheffield United v Sunderland - Sky Bet Championship Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Defence: Luke O’Nien, Danny Batth, Dennis Cirkin

O’Nien was a bit dodgy against Stoke, but redeemed himself with a man of the match performance on Saturday and will likely line up alongside Batth and Cirkin again.

Sunderland v Norwich City - Sky Bet Championship - Stadium of Light Photo by Owen Humphreys/PA Images via Getty Images

Midfield: Lynden Gooch, Corry Evans, Dan Neil, Alex Pritchard, Jack Clarke

Corry Evans made a welcome return to the team on Saturday, and we need our skipper on the field. Gooch and Pritchard are also important for their experience, and Dan Neil’s immediate recall showed how the club view him this season.

Jack Clarke’s an interesting one, and it’ll be intriguing, longer term, what the new head coach does with him. But tonight he should be in his now familiar wing back role.

Stoke City v Sunderland - Sky Bet Championship - bet365 Stadium Photo by Nigel French/PA Images via Getty Images

Attackers: Ellis Simms, Ross Stewart

Simms looked tired in the second half on Saturday, and we’ll have to manage him carefully over the coming weeks. Him and Stewart are dangerous together though, and in a game in which we need to take the initiative, the two of them will surely start.

Sunderland v Norwich City - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Michael Driver/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images


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