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03 Nov

Middlesbrough v Sunderland Live Stream Championship

While probably seen as the least ‘big’ of the Tyne-Wear-Teeside axis of derbies, this is a big one. Sunderland have just binned off their manager, Simon Grayson, who won a comical one game in charge.

Meanwhile, Boro have yet to get back to the form many would expect, languishing in 8th when a promotion push would have been top of the request list. This one could play a major role in determining the form for both clubs for some time to come.

How to Watch Middlesbrough v Sunderland lives stream (3 steps guide)

Middlesbrough News
Two wins on the spin ended a poor run of form for Garry Monk, and we expect them to continue in decent form here. While the likes of Tavernier and Downing have yet to crack on this year, the solid spine of Ayala, Howson, Braithwaite and Assombalonga make a big difference to how they play.

Boro are in decent shape – not every exciting, yet, but relatively resolute. We expect them to line up in their usual 4-2-3-1, with the width coming from Cyrus Christie – who has been excellent – and Fabio. Grant Leadbitter runs the middle of the park for the team alongside Howson, and we expect that to continue.

Only Rudy Gestede is missing out this time, meaning that for the first time in a while Boro have a fully fit squad – more or less. We don’t expect a big change from the side that won against Reading and Hull, with Monk likely to keep faith with winners.

Sunderland News
Meanwhile, Sunderland are their usual messy selves. While only young Josh Maja is missing out – yet to play this season – they can’t even have the placebo of players to come back from injury to use as an excuse. Outside of summer signings Aiden McGeady and Lewis Grabban, Sunderland have very little quality whatsoever. The midfield combination of Paddy McNair and Didier N’Dong are just not very creative, and Jonny Williams has done nothing in the red and white to remember.

Meanwhile, young midfielder Duncan Watmore has yet to look a player this season, and his poor linking with Adam Matthews is set to be tested again with both of them pairing up in a 4-2-3-1. Defensive pairing John O’Shea and Lamine Kone are unimpressive, too, showing little cohesion or co-ordination.

Sitting 22nd in the league, this is the worst spot the club have been in for years. With little excitement or ability in the squad at present, it’s hard to see how they might turn this one around, sadly. With the team that’s expected for Sunday, too, that isn’t likely to change.

Middlesbrough v Sunderland live stream at bet365 (18+ , T&C Apply)

Having been in and out of the leagues at the same time for a while, the last two seasons have been the first time in a long time that both clubs have been competing against each other regularly. Sunderland have won a single of their last six Wear-Tee derbies, with Boro winning three of them – including both last year to help condemn their rivals to relegation.

Match Expectation
Frankly, we expect an absolute battering for Sunderland. They are out of a manager, have a team that looks as bad on paper as it plays, and seem to have no real hope or belief. Fans are staying away, the entire club is in toxic disarray and, frankly, Boro are in harmony in comparison.

Without a home win all year, though, Sunderland do play better away from home – how much better, though, remains to be seen in what we expect to be a fairly routine Boro win.