Sunderland have endured a tumultuous season thus far under Tony Mowbray, seemingly struggling to find any kind of consistency.
It seems that any victories almost always fail to be built upon, and after recording a fine victory away to Huddersfield Town it seemed like welcoming Cardiff City to the Stadium of Light could have finally brought back-to-back wins.
It seems like this will be the difference between mediocrity this season and an unlikely playoff push.
To give themselves the best possible chance of recording a result on the road, Mowbray must surely return Elliot Embleton to the side in his favoured central midfield position in the place of Abdoullah Ba, who recorded an abysmal 6.4 SofaScore rating.
The 23-year-old has been forced to fill in up front for the majority of this campaign due to injuries to both Ellis Simms and Ross Stewart, despite only being an offensive-minded midfielder.
However, this attacking impetus pushed upon him could help him become more of a threat from the engine room alongside the more conservative Dan Neil.
Returning him to the centre of the park will likely not only benefit his personal game but the whole squad, as his qualities are there for all to see.
Max Power in particular was full of praise for the youngster, as he said the following on the SAFC Unfiltered Podcast: “He’s technically one of the best players I’ve seen. A good mark of knowing someone’s technically good is he can take corners with both feet.
“He’s someone who sees that pass that other players don’t. He’s a nightmare to play against in training, because he can go either way, shoot off both feet.”
Placing someone of this quality back into midfield will surely boost their chances of winning on the road again, and boosting them up the Championship table.