So, the first weekend of fixtures since the transfer window closed and fans across the country get a chance to see what their managers have splashed out on – or not, as the case may be – in January. After nearly a week training with their new teammates, the big money January movers will know that they have to perform this weekend – first impressions are just as important in football as they are out in the real world, and especially interesting will be the Suarez-Torres face off at Stamford Bridge…
Stoke City vs. Sunderland (Sat, 12.45pm)
Steve Bruce didn’t waste too much time reinvesting some of the money he received from the sale of Darren Bent, and in Sessegnon and Muntari he may well have added some real quality to his midfield – how quickly they can bed in and get going though, is another question. And, despite the potency of the Gyan/Welbeck partnership, I think Stoke at home will probably be able to strangle the life out of the Black Cats a little, and expect them to maintain their strong home record in the Premier League, though probably not in enthralling fashion.