Premier League Preview: Sunderland v Hull City
By Football News
Resurgent Sunderland welcome Hull City as the hosts seek to win a third Premier League game in succession for the first time in two years.
Manager Gus Poyet has inspired a superb turnaround at the Stadium of Light since taking over in October when the Wearside club were bottom of the table.
Sunderland completed a league double over fierce local rivals Newcastle United for the first time since 1967 with an emphatic 3-0 win at St James' Park last Saturday.
That result marked Sunderland's sixth league win of the season following a slender 1-0 home success against Stoke City three days earlier, and moved them up to 14th.
Sunderland now have the chance to increase hopes of top-flight survival by making it three in a row on Saturday, a feat they have not achieved since a 1-0 triumph at Stoke on February 4, 2012.
Poyet's men could move into the top half with a victory against Hull, who have won just one away game in the league so far this campaign.
Hull's lone success on the road came in a 3-2 win at Newcastle, but Steve Bruce's side will need to reverse their dismal recent form if the Yorkshire club are to add to that disappointing tally.
Indeed, Hull are winless in five Premier League games, a 1-1 draw against Tottenham ending a run of four straight defeats.
However, Bruce will need no extra motivation to get back to winning ways as he returns to the Stadium of Light as an opposing manager for the first time since he was dismissed as Sunderland boss in November 2011.
The visitors will again be without goalkeeper Allan McGregor, who serves the final game of a three-match ban for his dismissal at Crystal Palace at the end of last month.
Defender James Chester is out with a hamstring injury, while striker Sone Aluko is still recovering from an Achilles problem.
Steven Fletcher (Achilles) remains a doubt after missing the win over Newcastle, while Lee Cattermole's (calf) participation is also in question.
Keiren Westwood (shoulder) is expected to be out for the remainder of the campaign, but defender Carlos Cuellar could be in line for a comeback after returning to full training.