The Black Cats are unbeaten in their last six Premier League away games but face a title-chasing team in need of overcoming a brief blip in form and the manager expects a battle
The Wearsiders suffered their first Premier League defeat in five games when they were beaten 2-0 by Hull City on Saturday and they are hovering just one place above the relegation zone.
The Black Cats now face the task of locking horns with a City side licking their wounds after their 100 per cent top-flight home record was ended by Chelsea before they were held at Norwich City on Saturday, with the fixture a dress rehearsal of sorts for their Capital One Cup final clash on March 2.
|11/2||Sunderland are 11/2 with Bet365 to score over 1.5 goals against Manchester City|
"We must be spot-on and do everything right, make sure we're organised to make it difficult for them.
"Saying that, I think it's a game the boys are looking forward to, having the opportunity to play against the team we will face in the cup final. It's a nice game to play."
Sunderland are unbeaten in their last six away games in the Premier League and Poyet says that he will expect a brave performance at the Etihad Stadium.
"[Away form] has been very important - we've been very good away from home of late, probably one of the best," he continued.
"We are going to have to defend at periods in the game because of the quality of the opposition. At the same time we need to be dominant on the ball.
"Without any doubt, it's going to be physical. We will need to be in good shape but, mentally, we must be strong enough to go and try, as much as we can, to control the game. We can't just let them come forward again and again."