Sunderland face Middlesbrough at the Stadium of Light in the Capital One Cup
Last Updated: October 30, 2012 10:35am
Stephane Sessegnon: Could be recalled for Sunderland against Middlesbrough
Sunderland will be looking to follow up last season's FA Cup win over Middlesbrough by knocking their North East rivals out of the Capital One Cup.
The Premier League side required a replay to finish off Boro last season and prevailed 2-1 after extra-time at The Riverside following a 1-1 draw at the Stadium of Light.
The Black Cats have lost only once this season, but goals have been in short supply after six draws in eight games, with Steven Fletcher the only player to have scored in the league.
James McClean, however, has netted three of the club's four goals in the League Cup following 2-0 wins over Morecambe and MK Dons in the previous rounds.
Middlesbrough are on a four-match winning run in the Championship and head to Wearside having already beaten Bury, Gillingham and Preston in the competition this season.
Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill looks set to ring the changes for the derby clash with Boro.
The Black Cats were again uninspiring in a 0-0 draw at Stoke on Saturday and playmaker Stephane Sessegnon could earn an immediate recall after being dropped against the Potteries.
Phil Bardsley could also make his first start of the season at right-back, freeing up Craig Gardner to move into a more accustomed midfield role.
Middlesbrough boss Tony Mowbray will run the rule over Jonathan Woodgate and Marvin Emnes ahead of the game.
Defender Woodgate has missed the last two games with a thigh injury while Emnes limped out of Saturday's 2-1 win over Bolton with a hamstring problem and both men will face late fitness tests.
Merouane Zemmama is back in training having recovered from a hamstring problem and he is expected to be in the squad.
There are no movements on any of Boro's other injured contingent, with Luke Williams (hip), Kevin Thomson (calf), Rhys Williams (ankle), Lukas Jutkiewicz, Mustapha Carayol and Curtis Main (all knee) still occupying the treatment room.