SUNDERLAND manager Lee Johnson admits that the pain of the hammering away to Portsmouth a fortnight ago still feels fresh, which is something they hope to put right away to Gillingham this afternoon.

The Black Cats, backed by a following of loyal supporters, make a near 650 mile round trip to the Priestfield Stadium hoping to right the wrongs at Fratton Park when they lost 4-0 last time out in League One.

Sandwiched in between the league games have been two victories in the Papa John's Trophy where the kids have stolen the spotlight beating Lincoln City and Manchester United's Under 21's.

Now that they return to the bread and butter, or the priority as the manager says, they will be hopeful that another long trip down south doesn't go unrewarded.

"I’m still reeling from the Portsmouth game to be honest with you" Johnson said.

"It’s still in me, that sort of pain and anger and frustration and I hope it’s in all of the lads as well.

“We don’t want to tense when we’re playing. We want to make sure that we’ve got a memory and understand that we let the fans down and that we play with a desire to reinstate their confidence in us."

Sunderland were recently struck with the blow that Niall Huggins will miss the next three months because of a back injury.

Nathan Broadhead will miss the game alongside Leon Dajaku and Lynden Gooch who have all been added to the injury list. Dajuku suffered a thigh injury whilst on international duty with Germany's Under 20's.

The good news is that Aiden McGeady, who missed the trip to Pompey with an ankle injury, is expected to be available for tomorrow, as is Luke O'Nien who had positive news from an x-ray for a rib injury.

Captain Corry Evans has been struggling with injury this season and looks set to miss the next few weeks because of a calf injury.

Several other members of the squad will be assessed before the game, including injury free players that have been away on international duty.

Johnson said: “We’ve got a lot of away journeys. Bailey (Wright) is coming back from Japan. Flano (Tom Flanagan) played and Winch (Carl Winchester) is back and Callum Doyle come off on 90 minutes with cramp so there’s a lot of moving parts at the moment.

Gillingham continue to have injury problems ahead of their Sky Bet League One clash with Sunderland.

Having hoped to have Ryan Jackson and Mustapha Carayol available for last weekend’s game against Wycombe, boss Steve Evans is waiting to find out whether either will be fit this time.

Left-back David Tutonda will definitely be out after sustaining a hamstring injury during the 2-0 defeat at Adams Park.

Stuart O’Keefe did return as a substitute following his recovery from a shoulder problem, but Dan Phillips (ankle) remains some way off.