Big match focus: Black Cats v North End

Sunderland boss Chris Coleman (photo: Frank Reid)
Sunderland boss Chris Coleman (photo: Frank Reid)

MEET THE BOSS: Chris Coleman

The former Wales manager was appointed as Sunderland boss in November, succeeding Simon Grayson who had been sacked after four months in the job.

Coleman resigned from his job with Wales to take the Stadium of Light vacancy. He had managed Wales for more than five years, guiding them to the semi-finals of Euro 2016. Before Wales, Coleman managed Fulham, Real Sociedad, Coventry and Greek side AEL. As a player he served Manchester City, Swansea, Crystal Palace, Blackburn and Fulham.

MEET THE REF: Darren Bond

The Wigan official will referee Preston’s visit to Sunderland on Saturday. This is the third North End game which Mr Bond has taken charge of this season – he oversaw the goalless draw with Millwall in September and the 2-1 win at Bristol City in November. In both games, he showed four yellow cards – three of them to PNE players. Mr Bond has taken charge of four Sunderland matches this term, one of those at the Stadium of Light.

THIS WEEK:

67 years ago: On March 17, 1951, Preston beat Sheffield United 3-2 at Bramall Lane. Willie Forbes, Charlie Wayman and Ken Horton scored. PNE won the Second Division title that season.

56 years ago: On March 14, 1962, North End were beaten 2-1 by Manchester United in an FA Cup quarter-final replay. Alan Spavin netted for PNE in front of a 63,468 crowd at 
Old Trafford.

31 years ago: Preston beat Stockport County 3-0 at Deepdale on March 17, 1987, to boost their promotion push from Division Four. Gary Swann, John Thomas and Frank Worthington were on target with the goals.

27 years ago: PNE beat Birmingham 2-0 at Deepdale, Lee Cartwright and Warren Joyce netting.