David Meyler set to leave Hull City for early Sunderland return
HULL City are expected to be dealt an untimely blow to their festive preparations with Sunderland ready to recall David Meyler next week.
Meyler has established himself as an instrumental figure in midfield during his five-week stay at the KC Stadium and produced his best performance yet when scoring in City's 2-1 win at Watford last weekend.
The 23-year-old was expected to retain his place in Steve Bruce's side for this lunchtime's clash with Huddersfield Town, but it could prove to be his final action in a City shirt.
An injury crisis on Wearside has led Martin O'Neill to contact Bruce this week and the Sunderland boss expects to activate a recall clause before City's trip to Derby on Friday.
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"I'm thinking about recalling David Meyler for our Christmas programme," said O'Neill yesterday. "In fact, that looks like being a certainty. I've spoken to Steve Bruce about it and he understands the situation.
"He knows we're having a look at it and he appreciates the position.
"David has done well for Hull but he's essentially our player. He's played games for them, which is great, because that's what he needed and wasn't getting here.
"But the situation is different now and we'll see how we are next week."
Meyler's anticipated return to Sunderland will come as a setback for Bruce but an otherwise fully-fit midfield will offer options to cover the loss.
As well as veterans Seyi Olofinjana and Paul McKenna, who have both held their own in City's midfield this term, Bruce could also turn to Tom Cairney, recalled to the bench last week.