With Sunderland taking four years to battle their way out of League One, this fixture has endured an unexpected hiatus. The last time these two sides met was in a frantic 3-3 draw at the Stadium of Light back in February 2018.
Middlesbrough have made a poor start to the new campaign, sitting 22nd in the Championship with just one win and six points from seven games so far. However, Chris Wilder’s men have had no problems scoring goals, so it should be quite easy for them to climb up the table if they can work out their defensive flaws.
Despite being newcomers back into the English second tier, Sunderland have fared well up to now. The Black Cats are eighth in the table with 11 points, only two below Watford and Burnley in the playoff spots. Scottish forward Ross Stewart has continued his fantastic form in League One last season, scoring five goals so far — only Hull’s Oscar Estupinan has more — and will be the danger man in this fixture.
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Middlesbrough vs Sunderland match stats
As mentioned, Boro have been potent in attack so far, scoring the fifth-highest number of goals in the Championship this season. However, only Hull have conceded more and Wilder needs to organise his troops quickly to ensure Boro don’t fall into an unexpected relegation battle.
Sunderland are one of the few teams to score more than Boro so far, hitting the net 11 times to their rivals’ 10, while they’ve only conceded eight goals. Tony Mowbray’s side have conceded just once in their last three games, taking six points during that time.
24 Feb 2018 – Sunderland 3-3 Middlesbrough – Championship
06 Jan 2018 – Middlesbrough 2-0 Sunderland – Championship
05 Nov 2017 – Middlesbrough 1-0 Sunderland – Championship
26 Apr 2017 – Middlesbrough 1-0 Sunderland – Premier League
21 Aug 2016 – Sunderland 1-2 Middlesbrough – Premier League
As mentioned, we were treated to an exciting 3-3 draw the last time these two shared the pitch. However, that only ended a run of five consecutive defeats to Boro for Sunderland, who last beat their rivals back in February 2012. Overall, though, Sunderland have the upper hand in this fixture, winning 61 times to Boro’s 50, while they’ve shared 38 draws.