A day after the Robins had let slip a lead to lose at Hull City, Sunderland did the same to only draw at home with Coventry City.
When Bristol City went a goal to the good on Humberside last weekend, Nigel Pearson would have hoped that it was the start of better things to come after last season's efforts.
However, like they did on numerous occasions during 2021-22, Bristol City conceded a goal deep into added-on time to succumb to a 2-1 defeat.
Pearson and the club's supporters will argue that refereeing decisions were not on their side, and positives can be taken from their performance at the MKM Stadium.
Nevertheless, the manner of the defeat has left the Robins already feeling like they are playing catch-up, and a change of fortunes on Saturday feels imperative.
Bristol City ended the most recent campaign with a four-match unbeaten streak at Ashton Gate, collecting six points in the process.
As far as Sunderland are concerned, Alex Neil will be relatively content with coming through their first fixture back in the second tier without suffering a defeat.
That said, conceding an 84th-minute equaliser to Coventry led to a deflating feeling come the final whistle, something which Neil will hope does not linger in the long term.
On a positive note, playing in front of a crowd in excess of 40,000 in the Championship was a sight that the club has been striving for ever since their relegation in 2018, and a share of the spoils has still gotten the ball rolling for the season.
The Black Cats have one of the more difficult starts to the campaign with games against Sheffield United and Norwich City to come before the end of August.
Their schedule strengthens the importance of collecting points from this fixture, building some early distance between themselves and the relegation zone.
Pearson may opt to make at least one change to his Bristol City starting lineup with Zak Vyner having struggled with illness earlier this week.
Timm Klose is on standby to come into the team, but that may prove to be the only alteration after a positive performance last time out.
Despite Jack Clarke getting on the scoresheet from an unfamiliar wing-back role last time out, Neil may be tempted to use him further forward.
Dennis Cirkin could potentially move into that role with a replacement being found at centre-back, but the Sunderland boss could opt against making too many changes in personnel.
Bristol City possible starting lineup:
Bentley; Klose, Naismith, Atkinson; Sykes, Williams, James, Dasilva; Scott; Weimann, Martin
Sunderland possible starting lineup:
Patterson; Ballard, Batth, Cirkin; Gooch, Evans, Neil, Clarke; Embleton; Pritchard, Stewart
We say: Bristol City 1-1 Sunderland
With a competitive under their belts, both teams will feel confident of retaining their concentration for longer than they did last week. Nevertheless, with that in mind, we can only see a low-scoring draw between two evenly-matched sides.
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