What It Means: The detached place, the same derivation as being cast asunder. Which in Boro's case was quite common at Roker Park.

Why It's There: a fishing village next to Bishopwearmouth and Monkwearmouth monasteries until found to be built on coal, then became the country's premier shipbuilding centre (guess where the steel came from?). Re-established the British glass industry lost after the Romans, now kept going by Nissan cars and inherent obsession to stop Newcastle getting too full of itself.
 
Why They're There: founded as Sunderland and District Teachers FC in 1879 at Hendon board School, in the days when teachers had time on their hands and neither clubs nor schools had league tables to worry about. But neither were there enough teachers to put a team out so outsiders were let in and they became just Sunderland. Joined the league in 1890.

First Footing: November 1887 (FA Cup), December 1902 (league), after Boro were promoted.

Local Heroes: Len Shackleton, Trevor Ford, Jimmy Montgomery, Bob Stokoe, Charles Buchan, Niall Quinn, Kevin Phillips; Swindon chairman Brian Hillier, whose illegal payments and jail sentence meant Sunderland were promoted to the First Division in 1990 despite losing the Play Off final to them.

Local Villains: Claudio Marangoni, bandwagon-jumping 1979 Argentinian who lasted a year (but unlike Mario Kempes and Rene Houseman at least turned up); Milton Nunez, £1.6M Honduran striker (one game in 18 months) allegedly signed by mistake; Sir John Hall, who long before he became the Toon Tycoon was a season ticket holder at Roker Park; Deutsche Bank, shut down Vaux Breweries, costing hundreds of jobs; Charles I, moved County Durham's coal shipping rights in 1642 to Newcastle; and an ever-growing gang of ephemeral ghosts from the last six years.     

High Point: Six league titles (the last in 1936), two FA Cups, the second of which in 1973 was the only major trophy to come to the North-East since 1955. Until 2004. And the last seven games against Newcastle.

Low Point: dropping into the Third Division in 1987 (and being replaced by MFC); finishing bottom of the Premier League in 2003 with 19 points; the first two months in each of the last five seasons and the other six in this one.

Boro Highs: 6-0 (March 1936), 4-1 (October 1993), 3-0 (February 1922, November 1929, February 1939, January 1990 and September 1992)

Boro Lows: 0-4 (December 1933), 0-3 (September 1908)

Hello to: Len Goodson (December 1902), Tom Urwin (January 1915). JJ "Joey" Williams (March 1932), Eric Weightman (December 1933), George Laking (October 1936), Ray Barnard (December 1951), Alun Armstrong (February 1998)

Goodbye to: er, nobody. Incredibly in 64 league and nine cup games over 115 years not a single player has ended his Boro career at home to Sunderland. There've been a few who should have, a few who lasted one or two more games, and a few who looked as though they were trying to end someone else's, but if anyone doesn't appear for Boro again after playing in this game, he'll make history.

Boro Hero: George Elliott (September 1913), Boro's first hat-trick against them; then they let in four. George Camsell (October 1936), Boro's only other one and they let in five. Bernie Slaven (September 1991), just one goal but goal after only 17 seconds.

Boro Villain: Patsy Gallacher (December 1933), hat-trick in 0-4; and Grant Leadbitter (December 2007), the fastest-ever goal by a visiting team at the Riverside, after just 75 seconds. The previous fastest had come two years earlier after 85 seconds, by another Sunderland player, Tommy Smith.

Boro Bad Boy: Harry Bell (December 1951), off for studs-up stab at former teammate Len Shackleton, who'd just done the same to him, but was far more wily about it; Christian Karembeu (April 2001), a Gaston Ramirez moment, already booked for kicking the ball away, then off for shoving Darren Williams (of whom more later); Paul Ince (October 2001), off for comical cuff of Niall Quinn's collar after a colourful contretemps.

Mackem Malcontents: Joe Bolton (February 1981) off for head-butting Terry Cochrane, with rant at the crowd complete with hand signals as he left; Paul Hardyman (September 1991) off for elbow on John Hendrie, who then kicked him back and joined him; Chris Makin (November 1999), off for hacking down Christian Ziege.

Double Trouble: March 1936, Raich Carter, never even booked before or afterwards, off for a lunge at Billy Brown, despite Boro skipper Bob Baxter pleading with the ref that it was an accident. Carter, sitting in the dressing room, saw Bert Davies come in, and thinking the ref had changed his mind, was about to run back on. But Davies had also been sent off for protesting. Sunderland went on to win the title (for the last time), and Carter to return the favour by managing Boro to the brink of Division Three 30 years later.

Typical Boro: 0-3 (May 1928) last match of the season with Boro third bottom and Sunderland second-bottom, needing just a draw to stay up - with the final goal scored by the aptly-named Billy Death; 0-0 (April 1954) part of a disastrous three-game Easter against the team directly above them while losing twice to the only team below them, Liverpool, sealing relegation rather than resurrection; Darren Williams (April 1997) only goal of the game from a man born around four miles from the Riverside, and who never scored another in the Premier League. 1-1 (November 1999), Mark Schwarzer saves Kevin Phillips' penalty, only for Michael Reddy to put the rebound in for, yes, his only Premier League goal.

Early Doors Draws: 5-5 (October 1936), Boro were 2-0 up in six minutes, twice lost a two-goal lead, were 3-5 down just after half-time and levelled - all in just over an hour. 3-3 (December 1962), Boro were 0-3 down, all within a seven-minute spell, the last two when Sunderland only had 10 men, then scored three times in 15 minutes and it was all over by half-time.

The Inevitable: 0-1 (March 1962), the goal scored by Brian Clough. And after Alan Peacock had to go off after just two minutes, and Ronnie Burbeck after 30, though he came back to limp about the left wing. No subs for another three years. And he got another the following season in the 3-3. 

Football First: the first team ever to score 100 goals in a season when they won their first title in 1893; beat Scottish champions Hearts after winning the 1895 title and and modestly declared themselves World Champions; the first team to play (and win.....) at Ayresome Park, where they set five attendance records; and had the longest-ever spell in Division One until 1958.         

Triple Whammy: lost that record to Arsenal in 1987, just as they were relegated to Division three for the first time, and replaced in Division Two by .... Boro

Your Boys Took One Hell of a Beating: Lauren Laverne, Emeli Sandé, Kate Adie, Alex Kapranos, James Herriot, Steve Cram, Paul Collingwood, Dave Stewart, Terry Deary, author of Horrible Histories, who's probably working on one about this season; James Bolam (the Likely Lads was originally going to be set in Teesside, as it was halfway between his accent and Rodney Bewes' Bradford one); and George Clarke of Amazing Spaces.