Sunderland have won only two of their last 22 Premier League games against Chelsea going into Saturday’s crucial encounter at the Stadium of Light.
Billy Jones has been hampered by a hip problem this week and is Sunderland’s only injury worry ahead of the game, but he has not started a game since the beginning of February anyway.
However, Sam Allardyce could be tempted to make changes after fielding the same side for the last five games.
The Black Cats lost only one of those games but also won just once to slip back into the relegation zone last weekend.
Chelsea, meanwhile, have Thibaut Courtois available following his two-match suspension.
Courtois could displace Asmir Begovic in goal, but Guus Hiddink is not planning wholesale changes to honour the integrity of the competition, with Sunderland battling to avoid relegation.
Striker Loic Remy (groin) and defender Kurt Zouma (knee) are out.
- Sunderland have lost nine of their last 11 home Premier League games against Chelsea (D2). They last beat the Blues in October 2000 at the Stadium of Light.
- Chelsea have won 19 and lost just two of their last 22 Premier League games against Sunderland.
- Sunderland have failed to score in their last three Premier League games at home. Only once in Premier League history have they gone four on home soil without finding the net, back in December 2005.
- Chelsea have won six and lost just one of their last nine Premier League away matches, conceding just four times in that run.
- Sam Allardyce’s side have won just one of their last nine league games (D6 L2).
- Cesc Fabregas has scored four Premier League goals against Sunderland, his joint-best haul against any opponent (along with Everton).
- Just three of Jermain Defoe’s 14 goals for the Black Cats in the Premier League this season have been scored at the Stadium of Light.
- Former Blues forward Fabio Borini has scored in two of his three Premier League appearances against Chelsea for Sunderland.
- A league-high 19 different players have scored for Chelsea in the Premier League this season.
- Sunderland have netted a league-low two headed goals this season (both courtesy of Steven Fletcher, who has since moved to Marseille).