North-east going south? Sunderland and Middlesbrough in Premier League peril

David Moyes’s side are bottom of the league, Aitor Karanka’s Boro have lost four of their last five – are there any reasons for optimism? And what needs to change?

The clocks do not go back for another week but it is never too early for a north-east crisis and, sure enough, Sunderland and Middlesbrough already look deeply troubled.

David Moyes’s bottom-placed side go to West Ham on Saturday having collected only two points this season, and Aitor Karanka celebrated his sole win at Sunderland’s expense and has seen his team – 17th and at Arsenal on Saturday – lose four of their past five games.

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