>Facing their third home match in a week, Sunderland will be looking to extend their unbeaten start to the season which has seen them collect 14 points from a possible 18. Although they are unbeaten, there is still more to come from the Black Cats.
At the start of the campaign, Sunderland were touted by many to dominate this division, and while there is still plenty of time for them to establish themselves as the top dogs, they’ve not exactly burst into life over the opening six weeks. Steady and reasonably tidy are apt descriptions of Sunderland this season, though they’ve been anything but the best team in the division.
It’s been a reasonably pleasing start to the season for the visitors, Fleetwood, who come into this fixture off the back of a win last time out, despite having a man sent off. Having previously dropped points, that result will have pleased Joey Barton, who is in his first season as a manager.
Barton’s side are unbeaten in the league on the road this season having smacked Scunthorpe United for five before taking points at Charlton Athletic and Oxford United.
Sunderland v Fleetwood Team News
Defenders Glenn Loovens and Adam Matthews have both returned to training after recovering after injury and are in contention for the visit of Joey Barton’s side to the Stadium of Light.
Tom Flanagan, Jerome Sinclair and Charlie Wyke, who were all involved in Tuesday night’s Checkatrade Trophy tie against Stoke Under-21s, have suffered no reaction and will hope to force their way into Ross’ starting line-up.
Midfielder Max Power starts a three-match ban after failing in an appeal to have his red card against Oxford last weekend overturned, while Aiden McGeady and Duncan Watmore are making progress, but are still not ready to return.
Fleetwood will be without winger Wes Burns after he too appealed unsuccessfully against a sending-off. Burns was dismissed for a challenge on Bradford’s Adam Chicksen during last Saturday’s 2-1 home win and will now sit out for three matches.
Barton will otherwise have a full squad to choose from with Bobby Grant, Kyle Dempsey, Cian Bolger, Gethin Jones and Eddie Clarke not even making the bench last weekend.
- Sunderland will be facing Fleetwood Town for the first time in any competition.
- Fleetwood have kept three consecutive away clean sheets (W2 D1) The last time they kept four on the bounce came back in March 2017.
- Both Sunderland and Fleetwood rank in the bottom six for shots accumulated in League One this season.
- Sunderland and Fleetwood are both averaging 1.33 expected goals for in League One this season.
- Sunderland have won three of their last four league games at the Stadium of Light (D1) – as many victories as in their previous 34 home league games.
Free Betting Tips
This will be tight affair. With Sunderland good at home and Fleetwood running a tight ship away, something has got to give and although they are closely matched, it is the visitors who appeal ahead of this match. Given the recent performances of both, coupled with the fact that both teams look very closely matched in several areas, it’s easy to feel that Fleetwood have been underestimated at the prices.
The draw is 11/4 with Leovegas.
If you want a punt, Fleetwood to win and under 2.5 goals is 7/1 (Betbright)
A more safe bet here and a market I like for this one is Under 2.5 goals and BTTS no 7/5 (Leovegas)
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