Jack Rodwell was handed his chance in midfield for Sunderland's crunch clash against Crystal Palace.
Sunderland boss Sam Allardyce decided to include Rodwell at the expense of Lee Cattermole in the central midfield trio after the ex-Manchester City man's impact in last weekend's defeat at West Ham.
That was the only change made by Allardyce, who opted to keep faith with Dame N'Doye out wide, rather than recall Fabio Borini.
Sunderland: Mannone, Yedlin, O'Shea, Kone, van Aanholt, Kirchhoff, M'Vila, Rodwell, Khazri, N'Doye, Defoe. Subs: Pickford, Jones, Kaboul, Larsson, Cattermole, Borini, Toivonen.
Crystal Palace: Hennessey, Ward, Dann, Delaney, Kelly, Cabaye, Jedinak, Zaha, Mutch, Bolasie, Wickham. Subs: McCarthy, Mariappa, Ledley, Lee, Sako, Gayle, Adebayor.