Football - O'Neill relishing Anfield trip

Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill will head for Anfield determined to extend an impressive record.

PA Sport

The Black Cats will bring down the curtain on a difficult set of festive fixtures at Liverpool having won at Southampton and, memorably, at home against Barclays Premier League champions Manchester City before Tottenham spoiled their run with a 2-1 victory at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.

However, while O'Neill acknowledges that the trip to Merseyside will be just as difficult as anything his side had faced over the holiday period, it will hold no added fears for him.

Anfield has proved a remarkably happy hunting ground for the Ulsterman over the years, with former clubs Leicester and Aston Villa having both won there.

Asked about his record at one of English football's most atmospheric venues, he said with a smile: "I've won almost every time.

"It's a surprise - with Leicester City, I think we won three consecutive times. I've done all right.

"We won with Aston Villa. We were also well beaten on one occasion with Aston Villa - I think we were beaten five and it could have been more. But the last time we visited there, we won.

"It's a great ground, it's very atmospheric. It's a great ground to play in and a great ground to visit and be there.

"For one or two of our lads, particularly the younger lads, it will be a great experience for us."

They will be without central defender John O'Shea after he damaged a hamstring against Spurs, but will be able to call upon full-back Danny Rose, who was ineligible to play against his parent club at the weekend.

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