City head to the North East this Saturday to take on Sunderland in Skybet League One for only the fourth time in the history of both clubs.
It’s been almost 60 years since Bill Anderson took The Imps to face The Black Cats to play out a 2-2 draw in the old second division, and the game this weekend will be just the 10th time that the teams have met each other in competitive action.
Michael Appleton’s side will be looking to make it two wins against the Wearsiders this season following the 2-0 win in October at LNER Stadium and continue the recent good form which has brought four wins from the last six outings. Phil Parkinson’s Sunderland team are also in good nick, unbeaten in their last four games with their last two games away from home yielding four points.
The Black Cats have had a bit of a resurgence in recent weeks following a difficult period after Parkinson was appointed as manager at the Stadium of Light. Our hosts started the season in fine fashion winning five games on the spin and starting the campaign unbeaten in their first seven games in all competitions. Since their visit to Lincoln they have stuttered in terms of results, but as already mentioned they are currently four games unbeaten. Drawing their previous two fixtures on their home patch at the start of the festive period with their last two games being on the road against Doncaster Rovers and Fleetwood Town respectively.
Last six games: LLDDWD
Sunderland’s assistant manager, Steve Parkin, spoke to the press on Friday afternoon about the visit of The Imps to the Stadium of Light. Parkin told the assembled press that he is anticipating a tough test from Michael Appleton’s side after being disappointed they couldn’t take all three points against Bolton Wanderers the last time they played in front of their own supporters.
“We feel as though we did enough to win the game on Boxing Day. We had a goal chalked off which was bitterly disappointing for us, and I think everyone who has seen that realises it should have been a goal. But it is important to get the home form going and put on a performance for the supporters tomorrow.
“I think they’re [Lincoln] in a confident mood. They’ve had a couple of good results and scored a good amount of goals. I think they’re playing with a little bit of freedom. Defensively, we’ll have to be right on it. We’ll have to expect pace and power down the sides, and we’ve got to make sure we see that off.
“But also if we play the way we can play with the ball at the moment, the movement of the boys playing just off Charlie [Wyke] and certainly the wing-backs, we can cause them as many problems.”
One To Watch - Chris Maguire
Maguire netted the leveller against Fleetwood Town in Sunderland’s last outing, the Scotland international has become a firm favourite on Wearside since his arrival at the club in the summer of 2018 after leaving Bury.
Maguire, who is nearing his 31st birthday is a vastly experienced attacking midfielder/striker who has spent almost ten years plying his trade in the EFL since moving from Scotland. Initially after making his mark at Aberdeen, he moved to Kilmarnock on loan before moving south of the border from The Dons to join Derby County for a six-figure fee. His time with The Rams was relatively shortlived before he was on the move again, this time to Sheffield Wednesday. Maguire featured almost 100 times whilst with the Owls scoring 19 goals, he left the Steel City following a brief loan spell at Coventry City with a growing reputation for the spectacular goal.
The Scot then found himself across South Yorkshire at Rotherham United before linking up with current City boss, Michael Appleton at Oxford United in early 2016. At the Kassam Stadium his goalscoring touch returned as he got his highest goal haul to date, netting over 20 for The U’s before he was on the move again. A one year stint with Bury led to attracting the eyes of his current employers, and since joining the Black Cats he has endeared himself to the home support which has earned him the nickname, King.
How to keep up with the game
There are no tickets available for City supporters on the day of the game but our supporters can still keep in touch with the game on WeAreImps iFollow. Domestically based supporters can listen to the game LIVE via an audio match pass with commentary provided by BBC Radio Lincolnshire’s Michael Hortin and Steve Thompson.
Meanwhile internationally based Imps’ can watch the game LIVE by purchasing a streaming match pass for £5 (or equivalent). For details of how you can keep up with the latest on City at Sunderland – CLICK HERE