Premier League: Everton vs Sunderland match preview
A look ahead to the Boxing Day clash at Goodison Park
Wednesday 25 December 2013
Roberto Martinez’s honeymoon period as Everton manager shows no signs of ending, with Sunday’s 2-1 win over Swansea keeping the Toffees in fourth spot and extending their unbeaten run to 10 games.
Across Europe’s top leagues, only Roma and Bayern Munich have lost fewer league games this season than Everton, which illustrates the scale of Sunderland’s task as they look for a win that could lift them off the bottom of the table.
Despite their impressive League Cup triumph over Chelsea, Sunderland’s initial resurgence under Gus Poyet has come to something of a halt, with no wins in their last six league games. Sunderland have failed to score in four of those matches, and the visit to Everton pits their misfiring attackers against the country’s most parsimonious defence.
Phil Jagielka and Leighton Baines have dispelled any doubts about their England credentials with a series of assured performances at the back, and they may yet be joined on the plane to Brazil by Ross Barkley, whose winner against Swansea on Sunday was the highlight so far of his eye-catching season. For Sunderland’s players, summer destinations will be the last thing on the minds, as they concentrate on putting an end to their winter of discontent.
KICK OFF: Thursday, 3pm
PAST THREE MEETINGS
Sunderland 1 (Sessegnon) Everton 0, Premier League, April 2013
Everton 2 (Fellaini, Jelavic) Sunderland 1 (Johnson), Premier League, November 2012
Everton 4 (Gueye, Pienaar, Osman, Anichebe) Sunderland 0, Premier League, April 2012
Sunderland’s 1-0 win over the Toffees in April was their first in 20 league and cup meetings.
The last time Sunderland won at Everton was in November 1996.
Bottom club Sunderland lead the league in own goals and red cards, with 5 each. No other club has recorded more than 2 of either.
Everton have conceded the fewest goals in the Premier League this season (16).
Everton to win: 1.36
Sunderland to win: 9
TV: Highlights on BBC1 at 10.25.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal are so close to winning the Premier League, but sometimes Arsene Wenger holds them back, says Jamie Carragher
Arsenal transfer news: Tomas Rosicky and Mathieu Flamini set for showdown summer talks over future
David Beckham reveals secret of his success: I 'stayed in to watch Match of the Day' rather than go out with friends on a Saturday night
Real Madrid vs Juventus preview: Juventus know they must attack to match past European glory
Two new members of Floyd Mayweather's The Money Team blag their way into entourage to celebrate to celebrate with Justin Bieber
- 2 Top Gear: Jodie Kidd, Philip Glenister and Guy Martin 'in advanced talks' to join show
- 3 General Election 2015: 14-year-old boy asks Nick Clegg – 'can you kill Katie Hopkins?'
- 4 University student in court for allegedly covering housemates' food in window cleaner and spit
In defence of liberal democracy
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: SNP suspends two members for disrupting Labour rally
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
Andy McSmith's Sketch: Feisty audience is the real star of an enlightening show