‘Unusual’ striker choice as Wayne Rooney rocked by suspension - Birmingham City predicted XI vs Sunderland - gallery

Here’s the Birmingham City lineup we think will face Sunderland in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday.

Birmingham City head back out on the road on Saturday as they take on Sunderland away from home at half past midday. Still without a win in four matches since Wayne Rooney took charge, Blues will be desperate to give their fans something to cheer at the Stadium of Light.

A huge improvement was shown last time out as Birmingham went 2-0 up against Championship title challengers Ipswich Town. Tiring legs cost Rooney his first victory, however, as the Tractor Boys scored two goals at the death to bring the score level and snatch a point.

It will be tough to do so as Sunderland are a good side, but Blues will be eager to go one step further on Saturday. The Black Cats, who have won just one of their last three matches, are currently four points ahead of Birmingham. They too will be hoping to put things right.

Rooney experimented with a change in formation last weekend, forming a 4-4-2 out of possession and a 4-2-2-2 diamond when in attack. We reckon, due to its success, the manager will try it once again. With that in mind, here are the 11 players we think will start this weekend.

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