Bank Holiday football: Newcastle, Middlesbrough and Sunderland all vying for 3 points at home

Middlesbrough, Newcastle and Sunderland are all in action over the bank holiday weekend Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Newcastle, Middlesbrough and Sunderland are all in match action over the bank holiday weekend.

Although it is still early in their respective seasons, all three teams are looking for wins but with wildly different objectives for what would make a successful campaign.

  • Newcastle vs Southampton - Premier League - 3pm, Saturday, August 28

Manager Steve Bruce is still searching for his first win of the season, as are his players. The Magpies have lost their first two Premier League games and were dumped out of the League Cup by Burnley in midweek.

Steve Bruce is keeping his fingers crossed that Newcastle are not hurt by one of their own when Adam Armstrong returns to St James' Park on Saturday.

The 24-year-old striker joined Southampton in a £15million switch from Blackburn this summer but took his first steps in the professional game at St James' Park after emerging from the club's Academy.

Adam Armstrong Credit: PA

He was sold to Rovers for £1.7million in August 2018 as then Magpies boss Rafael Benitez reshaped his squad having made just a handful of senior appearances, but has risen to prominence since.

One player not involved for Newcastle this weekend or for the remainder of the season is Matty Longstaff. The youngster has signed a one-year contract extension before joining SPL side Aberdeen on loan.

Asked about any remaining deals, Bruce said: "I've made no secret of the fact that with Covid, there wasn't a lot of money in the budget at all. There wasn't enough money to buy Joe Willock but we've managed to do it and broke all our transfer rules for the last few years.

"However, if there's a loan deal like we got Joe Willock, that is the market we're looking at."

  • Middlesbrough vs Blackburn - Championship - 3pm, Saturday, August 28

Neil Warnock has cut a frustrated figure on the transfer front, with Boro still actively looking to add to their squad before the transfer window closes on Tuesday evening.

However, deals for a number of targets have fallen down. Warnock says if his side are to be successful and seal promotion to the Premier League at the end of the campaign, then adding to their squad before the transfer window closes will be key.

This weekend Middlesbrough face Blackburn Rovers and old boss Tony Mowbray.

Neil Warnock has confirmed that Duncan Watmore has resumed full training as he nears a return to action.

The forward has not featured since the opening day draw against Fulham due to a calf problem.

With the first international break to come after this weekend, the Boro boss may not risk him.

“Duncan trained fully for the first time yesterday,” Warnock said.

“I didn’t want to risk him before the international break - that period would give him chance to fully recover.

“But we’ll have to see how he is.

“I didn’t think Tav would play last week and risked the wrath of the medical department!

“Fortunately it came off - he came through that and has had no reaction, he trained yesterday as well.

“Two or three didn’t train earlier in the week with a few knocks and a bit of illness here and there.

“We’ll get tomorrow done and it gives us chance to have a look at where we are with the squad.”

  • Sunderland vs Wycombe - League One - 3pm, Saturday, August 28

The Sunderland League One promotion steam train is rolling along the tracks nicely on Wearside.

So far the Black Cats have won three and lost one of their opening matches. This weekend Wycome come to town just one point and three places above the Black Cats in the table.

Wycombe were relegated from the Championship at the end of last season.

Lee Johnson has confirmed team captain Corry Evans is nearing a return and could be involved on Saturday.

Elsewhere, Lee Burge has returned to full training and could retain his place, with Frederik Alves confirmed fit after suffering cramp on his debut at Blackpool in midweek.

Sunderland and Wycombe have only met competitively on four occasions, with the Black Cats winning the last contest 4-0 at the Stadium of Light.