With Sunderland’s Premier League status safe for another season, the Lads travel to London to wrap up the season with everyone playing for their futures.
Paolo Di Canio will have to select a new left back after Danny Rose returned to his parent club following last weekend’s draw with Southampton - Rose would have been ineligible to play anyway. Jack Colback could fill in at left back, with Phil Bardsley expected to continue at right back, amid rumours of him looking to leave Wearside in the summer.
Di Canio didn’t get any new suspensions, but with Stephane Sessegnon completing his three match ban on Sunday, and Craig Gardner serving the second part of a three game ban, we’ll have another under strength midfield, likely consisting of Adam Johnson, James McClean, Alfred N’Diaye and Seb Larsson or David Vaughan.
Up front, Connor Wickham could start alongside a man under increasing scrutiny in Danny Graham, still looking to break his Sunderland duck, as we still remain without Titus Bramble, Wes Brown, Steven Fletcher and Lee Cattermole through injury.
Sunderland (from): Mignolet, Westwood; Bardsley, Cuellar, Kilgallon, Mangane, Rose, Colback, Larsson, N’Diaye, Vaughan, McClean, Graham, Johnson, Wickham, Mandrone, Laidler, Marrs.
Andre Villas Boas’ Spurs side go into Sunday’s game hoping to better Arsenal’s result against the Geordies in order to clinch a fourth place finish and the Champions’ League spot that goes with it.
AVB will be without Younes Kaboul (thigh), William Gallas (knee) and Sandro (knee), but Spurs will be hoping that Emmanuel Adebayor actually turns up and puts in another performance after his late winner against Stoke kept their European ambitions alive.
Spurs (from): Lloris, Friedel, Adebayor, Vertonghen, Assou-Ekotto, Holtby, Sigurdsson, Dempsey, Lennon, Walker, Naughton, Dawson, Dembele, Huddlestone, Parker, Livermore, Bale, Carroll, Caulker.
PREVIOUSLY AT WHITE HART LANE
It’s Sunderland, in London... what do you think?! December 2011 was the last time that the Lads went to White Hart Lane, only to come away losing by a single goal.
Martin O’Neill opted to start with Connor Wickham up front on his own, but ended up not giving him much service against a Spurs side that struggled without Gareth Bale. The Lads almost gifted the hosts the lead, when Seb Larsson’s header back to the keeper almost caught out Kieran Westwood, before the Swede went down the other end and created a chance that Kieran Richardson narrowly missed.
After going in goalless at half time, Spurs capitalised on the game’s first real chance on the hour mark, when Rafael van der Vaart and Roman Pavlyuchenko worked well together, allowing Pavlyuchenko to dispatch a shot past Westwood.
Once they’d taken the lead, Spurs held onto the ball well, and as the Lads struggled to get any sort of service to substitute Nicklas Bendtner up front, with the one chance that the Dane got was nowhere near the target as we picked up another defeat.
Sunderland’s last five at home at Spurs: LDLWL