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FA Cup | Third Round
Jan 6, 2024 at 12.45pm UK
Stadium of Light

0 - 3

Hume (39'), Pritchard (61'), O'Nien (78'), Ballard (88')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Ballard (35' og.), Isak (46', 90' pen.)
Gordon (66'), Guimaraes (72')

Preview: Sunderland vs. Newcastle United - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Sunderland vs. Newcastle United - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's FA Cup clash between Sunderland and Newcastle United, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

One of the standout fixtures in the third round of the FA Cup, Sunderland and Newcastle United renew hostilities at the Stadium of Light for a tantalising Tyne-Wear derby on Saturday lunchtime.

The Black Cats opened 2024 with a 2-0 victory over Preston North End in the Championship, whereas the Magpies fell to a 4-2 Premier League loss at the hands of Liverpool.

Match preview

The Black Cats normally hunt the Magpies in the animal kingdom, and given Sunderland's recent exploits during the new manager bounce period under Michael Beale, the second-tier hosts can feel optimistic of staying true to the food chain against their bitter adversaries.

After beginning his Stadium of Light tenure in the worst way possible - overseeing a humbling 3-0 home loss to Coventry City - Beale has since witnessed his Sunderland crop take seven points from the last nine on offer, including a pair of wins over Hull City and Preston with two clean sheets to boot.

First-half goals from Alex Pritchard and Nazariy Rusyn proved decisive against the latter on New Year's Day, allowing Sunderland to cling onto the fourth and final playoff position in the Championship table, although Hull, Coventry and Cardiff City are all within touching distance.

The fight for promotion now takes a backseat while Sunderland begin their latest venture in the FA Cup - a competition which the Black Cats have won in 1937 and 1973 - while they also collected runners-up medals in the 1991-92 campaign, going down 2-0 to Liverpool in the final.

Recent quests for national glory have ended prematurely for Sunderland, though, as Saturday's hosts have only made it past the third round once in the past eight seasons, although that did come in the 2022-23 campaign, where Fulham sent them packing after a fourth-round replay.

With relegation scraps a distant memory and Champions League football - however brief it was - returning to St James' Park, adding another long-awaited honour to the trophy cabinet is the next item on the agenda for Newcastle, but Eddie Howe's men have not started 2024 as they mean to go on.

After ending 2023 with three successive losses in all competitions - including an EFL Cup elimination at the hands of Chelsea - the off-colour Magpies produced a largely tepid display against title-chasing Liverpool and were thanking their lucky stars - as well as Martin Dubravka - to head into half time at 0-0.

However, another inevitable Reds onslaught saw Mohamed Salah net twice alongside efforts from Cody Gakpo and Curtis Jones, and while Alexander Isak's counter-attack strike and Sven Botman's header briefly silenced the Kop, it was a fruitless endeavour for Howe's men.

Now reeling from a worrying run of four successive defeats - losing seven of their last eight in total across all tournaments - Newcastle now set out to snap an identical run of consecutive losses in the FA Cup, where they have not triumphed since just before the first COVID-19 lockdown in March 2020.

Third-round defeats to lower-league opponents are not novel to the Magpies either, as Sheffield Wednesday and Cambridge United have eliminated them in each of the last two seasons, and not since 2011 have Newcastle beaten Tyne-Wear rivals Sunderland in any tournament, going winless in a staggering nine-straight derbies since.

Sunderland form (all competitions):

Newcastle United form (all competitions):

Team News

Sunderland's beating of Preston at the weekend saw no new faces enter the treatment room, although winger Patrick Roberts sat out that victory with the calf problem he picked up against Rotherham United and is a "big doubt" for the derby, according to Beale.

Bradley Dack is also facing a month on the sidelines with the hamstring injury he sustained against Hull on Boxing Day, while Dennis Cirkin has suffered a setback in his recovery from a similar concern and will miss the Tyne-Wear showdown too.

Niall Huggins (knee), Corry Evans (ACL) and Jay Matete (knee) complete the hosts' handful of injuries, and another start will come the way of Pritchard if Roberts's calf concern does not settle down in time for the weekend.

Neither Sunderland nor Newcastle are impacted by the imminent Africa Cup of Nations or Asian Cup, but Howe could once again be facing an absentee list in the double figures this weekend, starting with the suspended Sandro Tonali.

Callum Wilson has also been ruled out for two games with the calf injury which prevented him from turning out against Liverpool, where Kieran Trippier (groin) was also unavailable, although the latter may be in with a shot at making his comeback on Saturday.

Joe Willock (calf), Nick Pope (shoulder), Jacob Murphy (shoulder), Elliot Anderson (back), Harvey Barnes (foot), Matt Targett (thigh) and Javi Manquillo (groin) are among the visitors' definite absentees, and it remains to be seen whether Howe is tempted to call upon Loris Karius in order to give Dubravka a well-earned rest.

Sunderland possible starting lineup:
Bishop; Hume, Ballard, O'Nien, Alese; Ekwah, Neil; Pritchard, Bellingham, Clarke; Rusyn

Newcastle United possible starting lineup:
Karius; Livramento, Schar, Lascelles, Hall; Miley, Guimaraes, Longstaff; Ritchie, Isak, Gordon

We say: Sunderland 1-2 Newcastle United

While Newcastle should not face a similar barrage of shots at the Stadium of Light as they did at Anfield, the Magpies will still be feeling the heat in front of a raucous Sunderland contingent, who have witnessed their side slowly but surely become accustomed to Beale's methods.

Newcastle are no strangers to being on the wrong end of FA Cup shocks either, but Howe's men should not pass up this opportunity to end their dismal Tyne-Wear winless streak, and we can envisage the visitors earning a derby triumph in what may or may not act as a catalyst for a change in fortunes.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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