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Match Preview: Sunderland v Bristol City - all you need to know ahead of kick-off!

After an impressive midweek win in the capital, we return to the Stadium of Light hoping to make it three successive victories on home soil as Bristol City roll into town. Here’s all you need to know ahead of kick-off.

Photo by James Gill - Danehouse/Getty Images

Saturday 18th February 2023

(5th) Sunderland v Bristol City (16th)


Stadium of Light

Kick-Off: 15:00

Tickets & Match Coverage

Tickets: Tickets available via

TV/Stream: Full live match coverage is available via

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...

Following our impressive demolition of Queens Park Rangers in midweek, we return to the Stadium of Light to attempt to make it three successive league victories on home soil.

Since the last occasion we ended up on the losing side, we’ve looked impressive. with three wins over Middlesbrough, Reading and Queens Park Rangers and a hard-fought point at Millwall, which have taken us up to 5th in the table.

Considering the performance at Loftus Road, Tony Mowbray has a wonderful headache ahead of today’s fixture in terms of his team selection. The pack was shuffled and it led to a convincing win, so what the manager decides going into kick-off today is anyone’s guess.

Our record against Bristol City on our own patch isn’t the best and we have to go back to December 1994 for our last victory over the Robins, which back then came at Roker Park. And before that, we have to go back to 1977.

The league is predictably tight, with a six-point gap between ourselves in 5th and Reading in 13th, a continuation of this good run would go some way to cementing our place in the top six.

Sunderland v Fulham: Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round Replay Photo by Richard Sellers/Getty Images

It’s Bristol City’s 8th successive season at this level, and this year looks at the moment like a lot of those that have gone before. Currently sitting 16th in the table, they have only finished in the top half twice in the last seven years, with the last two ending in 17th and 19th place finishes.

Next Friday will be the second anniversary of Nigel Pearson’s appointment as manager of Bristol City, and an unbeaten run of ten games has gone some way to improve the outlook of the current season. We have to go back to the 22nd of October since they were beaten on the road in the Championship, but overall it remains the 7th worst away record in the division.

Nigel Pearson’s side are on a good run and they will travel to the Stadium of Light this afternoon full of confidence they can take at least a point back with them to continue their impressive form.

Bristol City v Blackburn Rovers - Sky Bet Championship
Nigel Pearson
Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images

The betting...

The bookies fancy a home win this afternoon with odds of 21/20 for the Lads to take maximum points, with Bristol City priced at 13/5 to take the spoils and the draw is around 23/10.

Head to head... at Sunderland

(All competitions)

  • Sunderland wins: 9
  • Draws: 8
  • Bristol City wins: 6
  • Sunderland goals: 40
  • Bristol City goals: 27

Last time we met... at the Stadium of Light

Saturday 28th October 2017


Sunderland 1-2 Bristol City

[Grabban 45’ - Reid 28’, Djuric 73’]

Sunderland: Steele, Jones, Kone, O’Shea, Oviedo, Watmore (Vaughan), Gibson (McNair), Ndong, McGeady, Williams (McManaman), Grabban Substitutes not used: Ruiter, Matthews, Cattermole, Honeyman

Bristol City: Fielding, Wright, Bryan, Brownhill, Flint, Baker (Pisano), O’Dowda, Pack, Reid, Taylor (Smith), Paterson (Djuric) Substitutes not used: L. Steele, Magnusson, Woodrow, Leko

Attendance: 27,317

Sunderland v Bristol City - Sky Bet Championship - Stadium of Light
Lewis Grabban celebrates scoring the equaliser when the sides last met at the Stadium of Light
Photo by Owen Humphreys/PA Images via Getty Images

Played for both...

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 of Sunderland gets booked
Martin Scott

Gary Owers

After making his debut in 1987, Owers went on to make 320 appearances for Sunderland over the next eight years, including 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.

Sunderland v Everton
Gary Owers
Photo by Mark Leech/Offside via Getty Images


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