Match Preview | Sunderland vs. Cardiff City
OPPOSITION FOCUS | IN THE DUGOUT
Sunderland’s current manager is Tony Mowbray, who has held the role since August this year, following Alex Neil’s departure to Stoke City.
During his playing career, Mowbray amassed an impressive 553 league appearances, featuring for nine seasons at Middlesbrough.
Also representing Celtic, the current Black Cats boss also played in over 100 league games for Ipswich Town and was inducted in the club’s Hall of Fame in 2016.
Since making the switch to management, Mowbray has achieved two promotions, firstly by winning the Championship with West Bromwich Albion in 2008, before finishing second in League One with Blackburn Rovers in 2018.
Prior to his move to the Stadium of Light, Mowbray’s final season with Rovers saw them finish six points outside of the play-offs, leaving at the expiration his contract at the end of the campaign.
OPPOSITION FOCUS | KEY PLAYER
A huge positive for Sunderland this season has been the form of winger Jack Clarke.
The 21-year-old has netted four goals and recorded six assists so far this campaign, notably putting in a standout performance in a 3-0 win over Rotherham United, in which he scored and set up two goals.
Returning to the Championship this season, Clarke first impressed for Leeds United, where he sparked the interest of Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur.
Having spent last season on loan at the Stadium of Light, the winger joined Sunderland on a permanent transfer in July.
CLUB CONNECTION | JEFF WHITLEY
There have been a number of players to represent both the Black Cats and the Bluebirds. This week, we focus on midfielder Jeff Whitley.
The former Northern Ireland international joined Sunderland from Manchester City in 2003, during a successful time for the club.
In his first season, he helped them to securing a place in the Championship play-offs, before going one better the following year, as the Black Cats were crowned champions.
In 2005, Whitley made the switch to the Welsh capital, making 38 appearances in his debut season as a Bluebird, before spending his second year on loan at Stoke City and Wrexham.
CITY FLASHBACK | BLUEBIRDS CRUISE TO CCS WIN IN PROMOTION SEASON
The Bluebirds’ last meeting with the Black Cats came in January 2018, with City looking to end a four-game losing streak.
Neil Warnock’s side did so in style, recording a convincing 4-0 win at Cardiff City Stadium, as Callum Paterson netted a brace, with Joe Ralls and Anthony Pilkington also on the scoresheet, capitalising on midfielder Didier Ndong’s red card for the visitors.
The victory over Sunderland was a crucial point in the campaign, as it sparked a 13-game unbeaten run, which saw the Bluebirds put themselves in serious contention for promotion.
On the final day of the season, a memorable day against Reading at CCS saw the Bluebirds secure second spot and their place in the Premier League for the following campaign.