SUNDERLAND v WEST HAM UNITED
BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE
STADIUM OF LIGHT
SATURDAY 13 DECEMBER 2014
REFEREE: PHIL DOWD
West Ham United travel to Wearside to face Sunderland on Saturday as the Hammers look to extend their winning run to four games. The Black Cats currently sit in 14th place with 15 points from 15 games.
Gus Poyet's men are looking for their first win in five games, however they have drawn four of those matches, including meetings with Liverpool, Chelsea and Everton.
Sam Allardyce's men are ten places higher, lying in fourth with 27 points. The 3-1 victory over Swansea City was their eighth of the season and the Hammers are now joint third top scorers with Manchester United on 26 goals scored.
Big Sam on: Sunderland
Who are they?
Sunderland were founded in 1879 as Sunderland and District Teachers, by James Allan, who taught at Hendon Board School.
They won their first league title back in the 1891/92 season and have been crowned champions six times in total, most recently in 1935/36.
Further honours include winning the two FA Cups, in 1937 and 1973.
More recently, they came close to winning the League Cup last season, however they lost to 3-1 to Champions Manchester City in the final.
Historically a yo-yo team between the top two divisions, they have now established themselves as a Premier League club, having played in the top flight for the last seven years.
West Ham United
Mark Noble is doubtful through injury as he battles a problem with his Achilles tendon, picked up against Newcastle United. Otherwise, Sam Allardyce has a full squad to choose from.
The Black Cats will be without Patrick van Aanholt who is to undergo surgery for a dislocated shoulder.
They will also be without Billy Jones (Hamstring) and Emanuele Giaccherini (Ankle), both of whom could return to face Newcastle on Sunday 21 December.
Saturday's referee is Phil Dowd. This is Dowd's first West Ham assignment of the season, but last year he was in charge of the Hammers' 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur, 0-0 draw away with Swansea City and 3-1 defeat by Arsenal.
The Assistant Referees are David Bryan and Peter Kirkup, while Darren Bond is the Fourth Official.
(2014/15 season - Barclays Premier League only)
Matches refereed: 10
Yellow cards shown: 48
Red cards shown: 2
Penalties awarded: 1
One to watch
West Ham United
In form midfielder has been in excellent form all season, earning a recall to the England squad. While at Middlesbrough, Downing had a brief loan spell at the Black Cats, scoring three goals in seven games back in 2003.
So far this season Downing has scored twice as well as contributing six assists, most recently he set up James Tomkins' winner against West Bromwich Albion and Andy Carroll's second goal against Newcastle United, both from corners.
<a title="" data-cke-saved-href="/Teams/player?id=22343" href="/Teams/player?id=22343" "="" target="_self">For all travel information of how to get to the Stadium of Light, click here.
Saturday afternoon is set to be sunny day but cold as temperature at kick off is forecast to be a chilly 2C (36F) with temperatures dropping throughout the match.
Sunderland 1-2 West Ham United
Barclays Premier League
Monday 31 March 2014
Andy Carroll powered the Hammers into an early lead and midfielder Mohamed Diame doubled it five minutes into the second half.
Substitute Adam Johnson gave Sunderland, who had earlier seen strong penalty appeals turned down, hope when he pulled a goal back with 25 minutes remaining. Adrian had to pull off a double save to deny Ki Sung-yueng and Connor Wickham to secure the three points.
Sunderland: Mannone, Bardsley, Brown, O'Shea (Gardner 60), Vergini, Alonso, Ki Sung-Yong (Scocco 79), Bridcutt, Cattermole (A. Johnson 53), Wickham, Borini
Subs not used: Ustari, Cuellar, Colback, Altidore
West Ham United: Adrian, Reid, McCartney (Armero 45), Tomkins, Demel, Nolan (Nocerino 84), Taylor, Noble, Diame (R.Johnson 79), Downing, Carroll
Subs not used: Jaaskelainen, Jarvis, J Cole, C Cole