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Preview: Sunderland v Bolton
07 Jan 2010 - 14:50:29
Sunderland manager Steve Bruce has been handed a triple boost as he prepares for Bolton's visit to Wearside this weekend.
Striker Kenwyne Jones and midfielders Kieran Richardson and Bolo Zenden were all able to resume training this week and are expected to feature in the Stadium of Light clash.
Jones has missed the last two games and Richardson the last three because of calf injuries while Zenden has been struggling with a hamstring problem.
There is also an outside chance that Anton Ferdinand, who has been sidelined for the last month with an ankle injury, will be able to play some part in Saturday's encounter.
However, Bruce still has a lengthy injury list to contend with as Craig Gordon (broken arm), Lee Cattermole (hamstring), John Mensah (hamstring), Andy Reid (hamstring) and Nyron Nosworthy (knee) are all still out while Michael Turner completes his four-match ban.
It is a crucial game for the Black Cats who have slipped down the table on the back of a seven-match winless run stretching back to their 1-0 victory against Arsenal in November.
Bolton come into the game in the relegation zone after winning only four of their first 19 league matches of the season.
However, despite parting company with Gary Megson after last month's 2-2 draw with Hull City, the Trotters were unbeaten in five games in all competitions before Wednesday's defeat at Arsenal.
Midfielder Sean Davis, whose season has been ended by a serious knee injury, is the only major absentee for the visitors.
Last season, Bolton secured an impressive 4-1 win at the Stadium of Light with Johan Elmander grabbing a brace of goals while Matty Taylor and Gary Cahill were also on the scoresheet. Djibril Cisse scored Sunderland's lone reply.