Sunderland are really struggling in the Championship this season and have appeared to be timorous, more often than not. Given the lack of quality and productivity in their outings, it isn’t really surprising to see the Black Cats stagnating at the 23rd spot in the league standings with 26 points to their name from 32 games.
Chris Coleman’s side suffered a 0-2 defeat at the hands of Brentford on Saturday at the Stadium of Light and if they are desirous to remain in the second-tier, they will have to hit their strides from here on. On Tuesday, they are due to face Bolton Wanderers at the Macron Stadium. Here is how we expect Coleman to roll out his starting line-up against Phil Parkinson’s side.
Coleman will have a relatively depleted squad to choose his starting line-up from, as Duncan Watmore, James Vaughan, Marc Wilson, Darron Gibson and Robbin Ruiter are all out owing to injury. Besides, Lamine Kone is also building his fitness and is thus a major doubt for the game.
As Ruiter is out, Lee Camp is expected to be handed the gloves ahead of Jason Steele once again in the league fixture. He has accumulated 3 games in the Championship this season but is yet to garner a clean sheet to his name and in the upcoming fixture, he would be keen to bag the same.
John O’Shea and Jake Clarke-Salter are expected to be chalked at the heart of the defence of Coleman’s side. Billy Jones is expected to play as the right-back whereas Adam Matthews is likely to get the nod to start from the left-back position. Sunderland’s defence has been terrible this season and if they fail to resurrect their form, they would face dire consequences at the end of the campaign.
Lee Cattermole and Jonathan Williams are expected to team up in the central midfield. While Cattermole is likely to operate mainly to shield the backline and break the opposition’s attacking endeavours, Williams would look to gallop forward and engineer shrewd passes to make something happen in the final third. Aiden McGeady and Joel Asoro are likely to be pencilled on the left and right-hand side of the midfield, respectively.
Josh Maja is likely to be handed the nod to lead Sunderland’s attack against the Wanderers. The 19-year-old has notched up just 1 goal in 9 Championship appearances and has a lot to improve upon in the coming months. Behind him, George Honeyman is expected to be stationed to provide the necessary service up front.