Former England defender Wayne Bridge could make his first start for Sunderland against Liverpool on Saturday.
Bridge has made three appearances as a substitute to date since making his loan move to the Stadium of Light from Manchester City in January, but could finally be in line for greater involvement this weekend as Kieran Richardson attempts to shake off a calf problem.
Manager Martin O'Neill said: "He would have to consider himself in contention. He has come here hoping at some stage or another he would be able to perform for us, so there is a strong possibility that he could get that position if Kieran doesn't make it."
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