The Championship returns with a great book of fixtures over the weekend, and one of the longest journeys of the weekend has to be Sunderland, who make the long trip down to Plymouth on the South Coast. The home side are struggling a little more than I expected, while the away side would love some consistency in their game.Plymouth Form Guide
Plymouth were a team I thought would be fine this season, coming up from League One, they were not going to thrive in the second tier, but at the same time, I thought they had enough quality to keep well away from the relegation zone. It's not quite turned out that way so far, down in 19th position, they're five points clear of the bottom three, but that's mainly because sides below them have been so poor, rather than because Plymouth have been that good.
Just four wins from 14, my thought was that they would play well and get points at home. They've beaten bottom club Sheffield Wednesday at home recently, but sides such as Millwall and Swansea have been here and won in the past few weeks, so there are holes in this team, even at home.Sunderland Form Guide
After a playoff appearance last season, Sunderland are in the playoff spots right now, siting in 6th with 26 points. And I think if you ask their fans, they'll say this is a side who maybe haven't hit top gear yet, and have a lot more to give, which is exciting for them, but we do need to start seeing that soon.
Unbeaten in their last three games, they come here on the back of a good 3-1 win at home to Birmingham, another 3-1 win, this time at home to Norwich and in the middle of those games, they took a good point in a 0-0 away draw with Swansea.Match Prediction
This is the kind of match Plymouth need to target, but I think it's going to be a step too far for them, against a good side. I think there's plenty more to come from Sunderland, maybe we'll see it soon, and I am backing them to take three points from this game on their return to action.