Former City star Dennis Tueart is looking forward to the visit of Sunderland perhaps more than most.
Tueart, who played for Sunderland between 1968 and 1974 before joining City and making 269 appearances as well as banging in 107 goals during two spells at Maine Road, believes there is a great affinity between the two Premier League teams that stretches back many years.
“I can see so many similarities between the clubs that it’s frightening,” he said. “Both City and Sunderland were under-achievers for many years, both well respected with big, passionate followings who hadn’t tasted success for several decades but today are two of the biggest clubs in England.
“I think there is a lot of affection between the two sets of fans and a definite affinity – there always has been.
"The scenes on the last day of last season where Sunderland fans did the Poznan after the final whistle prove as much. I think Sunderland and Newcastle have always related to City and United and it is true to this day.
“Sunderland fans still talk of the City goals I scored that beat Newcastle in the 1976 League Cup final and the hat-trick I scored against them a year or so after so I think I’m still in credit up on Wearside!”
Though Tueart has long been a City man as a player and a former director, the Black Cats will always hold a special place in his heart. He explained: “I suppose my ideal scenario would be a 2-2 draw on Saturday – if it was later in the season I may revise that slightly, but because it’s early on, a draw would be nice.
“It should be a great game because Martin O’Neill’s sides always play attractive football and they will come here to play.
"I don’t think Adam Johnson will be fit if what I read in the papers is true and that’s a shame because he would have got a great reception from the City fans and he’s an exciting player to watch. So a draw would be nice, but I expect City to win.”