Ryan Taylor’s backing Steve McClaren’s side to end Sunderland’s winning run – after watching Newcastle United roll back the years.
Taylor, the last Newcastle player to score a winning goal against Sunderland, watched his former club beat Norwich City 6-2 last weekend.
I went and saw the lads afterwards, and you could just sense the relief in that dressing room. What a time to take it into the derby.Ryan Taylor
It was the first time Taylor had been back to St James’s Park since leaving in the summer.
Taylor famously lifted a stunning free-kick over the home wall in the August 2011 meeting between the two clubs at the Stadium of Light.
And the 31-year-old, now at Hull City, is hoping Newcastle can end Sunderland’s run of five sucessive derby victories on Sunday.
“The lads who I were sitting with were saying this could be 6-5 to anyone,” said Taylor.
“But the old Newcastle came out. The fans were back to their best. They were entertained for 90 minutes. With the win, that’s what they want.
“The derbies over the years haven’t been that good, so I am hoping it can change.”
History has repeated itself at Sunderland, with the club having made another pre-derby managerial change.
“It’s always quite weird,” Taylor told talkSPORT. “Sunderland seem to time it perfectly with a management replacement just in time for the first home game to be the derby.
“We can’t hide from it. They’ve come out on top in the last couple of years, but I am looking forward to it because of that result they had at the weekend. What a win that was.
“I went and saw the lads afterwards, and you could just sense the relief in that dressing room. What a time to take it into the derby.”