Ipswich Town Fans’ Jury: Sunderland win ‘vital’ but never underestimate a wounded Black Cat

Bersant Celina celebrates scoring against Sunderland Picture Pagepix

Bersant Celina celebrates scoring against Sunderland Picture Pagepix - Credit: Pagepix Ltd

Our panel of Town fans look ahead to and predict the result of this weekend’s visit to Sunderland.

Fans' Jury predictions league standings after week two

Fans' Jury predictions league standings after week two - Credit: Archant

We have assembled a group of Town fans to predict the outcome of Ipswich games and have their say on what’s going on at Portman Road.

Every week, our panel of Ipswich Town fans will make their predictions ahead of the Blues’ latest game, with three points awarded for a correct scoreline and one point given for a correct outcome.

We’ll keep a league table along the way, before crowning a winner at the end of the season.

Katy Sealy

Another game for Town that we really should be getting three points from against struggling Sunderland.

It could be a game full of debuts after the transfer window, with new signings for both Town and Sunderland, three players who will strengthen their side and could feature against us this weekend.

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I’m not doing very well at these predictions recently but I’m being brave and going for a Town win this week. I’m not sure we’ll put five past them again but I feel like we can win it. Prediction: Sunderland 1-2 Ipswich

Jordan Spence celebrates his goal with Martyn Waghorn Picture Pagepix

Jordan Spence celebrates his goal with Martyn Waghorn Picture Pagepix - Credit: Pagepix Ltd

Jack Prentice

It looks like a season of mid-table safety and risk-free football will be the end result come May.

The transfer window delivered what was promised. The sale of players that may not have got much game-time here and a couple of players in to fill a squad and ensure Town reach the magical 55-60 point mark. It feels as though the club are preparing for a summer of change, whether that includes Mick or not.

Sunderland are much improved under Chris Coleman, not that it was difficult to better the side that came to Portman Road in September, and signed a striker and goalkeeper on Deadline Day. While I want a return to Bold Mick from the early season, I fear the 570-odd mile round trip that I’ll make on Saturday may not be rewarded with goals, thrills and spills. Prediction: Sunderland 1-1 Ipswich

Seán Salter

Ipswich manager Mick McCarthy faces another of his former teams on Saturday and I expect the result to be different to last weekend’s defeat against Wolves.

Sunderland have struggled to get out of the Championship’s bottom three this season, with only one win this calendar year and the Black Cats will be wary of Town following their 5-2 defeat at Portman Road in September.

New signings Ovie Ejaria and Kazenga Lua Lua will offer the Mackems some hope however, but ultimately Ipswich look to have too much to be troubled. An early goal from Town should be enough to silence the Stadium of Light faithful. Prediction: Sunderland 0 Ipswich 1

Sunderland are finding things tough at the bottom of the Championship.

Sunderland are finding things tough at the bottom of the Championship. - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Kieren Standley

Town’s first trip to the Stadium of Light since 2007 should provide much needed optimism, with the Black Cats in freefall since their relegation from the Premier League. The bookies have Sunderland as favourites which for the life of me, I just cant understand. Chris Coleman’s side have lost three of their last four in the league, so there is no reason why Town can’t come back from Wearside with three points in the bag.

In September, Town played to their full capability when dispatching them 5-2 but this sets up to be a completely different story. Unlike in the last meeting, Town go into this game struggling for form and goals have certainly dried up. That said, this is a perfect opportunity to regain much needed confidence, with a favourable game at home to Burton Albion next week. It’s absolutely vital that Town get themselves on a mini run and beat two inferior sides before the East Anglian Derby on February 18th.

Martyn Waghorn has now gone 10 games without a goal but I’m quietly confident that the former Black Cat will end his drought with another goal against his former side on Saturday. It will be interesting to see how the Blues set up with David McGoldrick a doubt. Could we see Town operate with a 4-4-2 now that Mick McCarthy has added a much needed wide player in Mustapha Carayol? Sunderland certainly couldn’t handle Bersant Celina last time out, so our new width could be key to winning this game.

So for the first time since being part of this Fan Jury, I’m predicting an Ipswich victory. I can’t see Town running away with it like last time, but I’ll happily take a narrow victory against a struggling side. Prediction: Sunderland 1-2 Ipswich Town

This weekend's game sees Mick McCarthy return to one of his former clubs.

This weekend's game sees Mick McCarthy return to one of his former clubs. - Credit: PA

Kate Riley

Another week and another team previously managed by Mick McCarthy. Town should be very confident running out at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.

Even though, Sunderland are fighting for their lives to avoid back to back relegations; they’ve only won once so far this calendar year as pressure mounts on them.

Town aren’t that much better in terms of their form, yet there seems to be more confidence in the camp for the team from Suffolk namely because we’re able to play freely without the looming threat of relegation. Prediction: Sunderland 0-2 Ipswich

Grant Ward goes around the keeper as he scores Ipswich's fifth against Sunderland Picture Pagepix

Grant Ward goes around the keeper as he scores Ipswich's fifth against Sunderland Picture Pagepix - Credit: Pagepix Ltd

Alistair Rattray

Towns record at Sunderland in recent times has not been great, but given the time-span since our last visit, it probably doesn’t provide any barometer to judge current expectations. Neither side have made drastic additions to their playing squad during the transfer window and Sunderland appear to have settled neatly back into their downward spiral, after a brief upturn.

Two months ago, this fixture would have seen Ipswich as firm favourites, but the relatively barren spell in front of goal continues to worry, particularly in light of the performance in our last away game at Bolton, another struggling side.

The return of Cole Skuse to the starting lineup will naturally help the side, but probably not sufficiently at the right end of the pitch. Prediction: Sunderland 1-1 Ipswich

Sunderland have signed striker Ashley Fletcher on loan from Middlesbrough. Photo: PA

Sunderland have signed striker Ashley Fletcher on loan from Middlesbrough. Photo: PA - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

José López Lerena

The weekend it’s almost here which means matchday!

We’re traveling to Sunderland who’s currently struggling to avoid the relegation. Therefore this is one of those games where we must take the three points… especially as we must go back to the winning ways! We have a huge duty up the north!

Hopefully our reinforcements of this winter market (especially Cotter and Carayol) will give us a booster to push for a win at the Stadium of Light! We should play as we did at Wolves either when we were at Molineux and Portman Road (during the first half)… or as we did in our last victory against Leeds! So my prediction for this game is a 2-1 for the Tractor Boys (Celina and Garner)! Fingers crossed! Safe travel to the Blue Army! Let’s do this! COYB! Prediction: Sunderland 1-2 Ipswich Town

Joe Fairs

Ipswich have a terrible record at the Stadium of Light, as do Sunderland over the last few years - I can’t see anything but a draw here. This is a game ITFC need to win, and follow it up with three points at home to Burton to try and hang on the tails of the chasing pack for the top six, but I don’t think any fan can see that double happening.

Hopefully the addition of Mustapha Carayol will allow more balance to be brought to the starting XI, but he is most likely a doubt to start which will likely see David McGoldrick employed on the right hand side in a role that doesn’t suit him and hasn’t been benefiting the team. Prediction: Sunderland 1-1 Ipswich Town

Benjamin Bloom

Ipswich have never won at the Stadium Of Light, and it would be nice to see that stat buried at the weekend.

Skuse returns and McGoldrick is doubtful - some would argue that both those factors strengthen the team in the current moment! Mick is starting to get a few more options with Webster and Ward back and Adeyemi in the conversation again soon. Sunderland have pulled out a few narrow home wins and clean sheets since Coleman took over - I think both teams are capable of scoring but neither capable of holding the lead. Prediction Sunderland 1-1 Ipswich Town

Amy Downes

Sunderland conceded nine goals in January, including four against Cardiff and three against Birmingham, which gives me a little hope that Garner, Waghorn Didzy and co. will be able to do their stuff tomorrow and give us travelling fans an exciting afternoon.

Of course it’s an away game and, despite them being near the bottom of the table, Mick will probably be happy to play for a draw again like he did against Bolton. We need the win in my opinion, so I’m going with a scrappy one nil win on my first trip to the Stadium of Light. Prediction: Sunderland 0-1 Ipswich Town