What a game we have at the Kassam Stadium this afternoon.

Any time you play Sunderland is a great occasion but we will have over 9,000 of our own fans and I am sure they are going to sing their hearts out to try and get us an important win.

Sunderland have some really good players and are a very well-coached side.

If you look at the games between us since they dropped in to League 1 four seasons ago, they have always been close.

I think when we first played them, we were definitely the underdogs but we battled so hard and did well in those games, and I’d love to know who the bookies have as favourites today because there is very little to choose between us based on the league table or recent form.

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Unfortunately we have only managed to pick up one point from the last nine despite playing very well in all three games.

This last week has been tough for us, and for the fans, with trips from coast to coast to play Plymouth and then Morecambe.

In the first game we were the better side in the first half and should have been ahead.

Then they have one superb strike and win the game with their only shot on target.

Morecambe then score with their only two on target on Tuesday night and somehow keep out everything we throw at them.

Credit to them, and their goalkeeper in particular, but it made a long journey home seem even longer.

There is no time to feel sorry for ourselves after those two results, is there?

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We woke up on Wednesday, trained to get that game out of our systems and then the last two days have been really bright and positive around the training ground.

Elliott Moore should be back today, Cameron Brannagan as well, and James Henry has made cameo appearances as a sub in the last two games.

Those three will be involved today and that makes us stronger, and with home advantage we feel there is still all to play for.

All of the clubs around us still have to play each other, we have some massive games coming up and I think sometimes you need to step back and remember why you fell in love with the game: big games, noisy crowds and big players doing great things at key moments.

Let’s see if we can create a few memories this afternoon.