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Match Preview: Bristol City v Sunderland - The Lads are back on the road!

We opened up with a promising draw at home and now we’re back on the road with a trip to Bristol City - here’s all you need to know ahead of kick-off!

Photo by Alex Burstow/Getty Images

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Saturday 6th August 2022

Bristol City v Sunderland


Ashton Gate

Kick-Off: 15:00

Tickets & Match Coverage

Tickets: Tickets are available here.

TV/Stream: Full live match coverage available via to residents outside the UK and Ireland, Channel Islands and Isle of Man only.

Radio: Full live match commentary available via BBC Radio 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!

The build-up...

The Lads kicked off with a promising draw last week against Coventry City, and today’s trip to Bristol City provides an opportunity to take our first three points of the season.

Our opening day fixture provided an early demo of the differences of moving up to the Championship, with Mark Robins’ side dominating possession of the ball at the Stadium of Light, although mostly without much threat.

Alex Neil was positive about the performance and the fact that had it not been for the quality of the equaliser we would have claimed maximum points on the opening day:

I thought we gave a good account of ourselves. I thought we were organised, and we made it really difficult for them. Let’s be honest, we’d be talking about a great result here if it wasn’t for one moment of quality.

We switch off, don’t get down the line quick enough and let him turn, but even then, it’s a great goal. It’s not as if we’ve made an error and they’ve had a tap in. The lad’s had to turn, dip past two players and bang the ball in the bottom corner. That’s the quality of the Championship.

Sunderland v Coventry City - Sky Bet Championship
Alex Neil during last weekends draw with Coventry City
Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Bristol City have begun their eighth season in the Championship this year, although the previous two have ended up struggling at the wrong end of the table.

Nigel Pearson was appointed manager at Ashton Gate back in February 2021 and is hoping that his first full season will improve the fortunes of The Robins. Their home form last season would have seen them 17th in the table, so that’ll be an area Pearson is looking to improve this season.

A trait they will also be looking to shed is throwing away leads to collect zero points, although they did just that, with potentially mitigating circumstances of a terrible referees decision, during their opening day defeat at Hull City.

Nigel Pearson will know that the pressure could quickly crank up at Ashton Gate if they are to go down to Sunderland this afternoon to open the season with consecutive defeats.

Hull City v Bristol City - Sky Bet Championship - MKM Stadium
Bristol City manager Nigel Pearson with Curtis Fleming during the opening day defeat at Hull City
Photo by Richard Sellers/PA Images via Getty Images

Stats & stuff...

  • Sunderland and Bristol City have only met twice before this fixture during this century.
  • These came back in 2017/18 where Bristol City won 2-1 at the Stadium of Light and the fixture at Ashton Gate ended in a 3-3 draw.
  • Sunderland’s previous victory over Bristol City came back in February 1999, which ended in a 1-0 win at the Stadium of Light via a Kevin Phillips penalty.
  • Denis Smith and Lee Johnson have managed both clubs.
  • Sunderland have scored six goals against Bristol City on two occasions, the first came in an FA Cup 4th round game in 1964 and the second was in the second round of the League Cup in 1990.
  • Sunderland have only won two of the previous thirteen league games against Bristol City.
Bristol City v Sunderland - Sky Bet Championship
Lee Johnson has managed both clubs
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

The betting...

The bookies have it close with a Sunderland away win at 19/10, Bristol City at 29/20 and the draw priced at 11/5.

In terms of a correct score, a 1-1 draw is the shortest odds at 24/5, followed by 6/1 for a 1-0 home win, although a 1-0 away victory is close behind at 15/2.

Head to head... at Ashton Gate

(All competitions)

  • Sunderland wins: 6
  • Draws: 6
  • Bristol City wins: 11
  • Sunderland goals: 31
  • Bristol City goals: 41

Last time we met... at Ashton Gate

Saturday 10th February 2018

Sky Bet Championship

Ashton Gate

Bristol City 3-3 Sunderland

[Flint 5’, Diedhiou 31’, 37’ - Brownhill (OG) 70’, McGeady 81’, Pack (OG) 90’]

Sunderland: Camp, Jones, Browning, O’Shea, Clarke-Salter, Oviedo (Lua-Lua), Cattermole, Honeyman (McGeady), Ejaria (Robson), Asoro, Fletcher Substitutes not used: J. Steele, Love, Gooch, Maja

Bristol City: Fielding, Brownhill, Bryan, Smith, Flint, Wright, Kent (Magnusson), Pack, Reid (Diony), Diedhiou (Walsh) Paterson Substitutes not used: L. Steele, Eliasson, Engvall, Woodrow

Attendance: 22,580

Bristol City v Sunderland - Sky Bet Championship
A Joel Asoro cross is deflected into the Bristol goal for Sunderland’s third goal back in February 2018
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Played for both...

Gary Owers

After making his debut in 1986, Owers went on to make 320 appearances for Sunderland over the next eight years that included three appearances at Wembley.

The midfielder moved to Bristol City in a swap deal involving Martin Scott and after spending four years at Ashton Gate he moved on to Notts County. Spells at Forest Green and Bath City followed before a move into management.

Soccer - Coca-Cola Cup - 3rd Round - Sunderland v Aston Villa - Roker Park
Gary Owers
Photo by Laurence Griffiths - PA Images via Getty Images

Martin Scott

Scott started his career at Rotherham United before a move to Bristol City in 1990. After four years and almost 200 appearances at Ashton Gate, Mick Buxton signed the full-back for Sunderland in a swap deal involving Gary Owers moving in the opposite direction.

Scott was forced to retire in 2000 through injury and had a spell as manager of Hartlepool United in 2005.

Martin Scott
Getty Images


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