Malcolm Dawson writes…….two wins on the bounce had put a bit of colour back into the cheeks of an ailing Sunderland side but we all knew that there is still a long way to go before recovery is complete. Today was a tough test but we started well enough. Organised and disciplined with PvA once again sticking one in. (I shall never tire of using that pun.) But I’m afraid conceding so quickly after taking the lead is not a one off occurrence and it happened again today. Cattermole’s booking perhaps changed the course of the game. We might have had the rub of the referee’s decisions on Wednesday but was it a yellow card offence? Was there even any contact? Looking at it on TV it seemed minimal to say the least but this is Lee Cattermole we are talking about and Big Sam was probably trying to avoid him picking up a second. Rodwell presumably was meant to be a like for like replacement, but why bring on a third centre back and change a system that had looked to be working at that stage? To give Danny Graham his due he had worked hard all game and covered the left back position well. Swapping him for a new signing, short of match practice made little sense. It didn’t take long for The Hoff to make an impression – twice! In his post match e-mail to M Salut and one or two others, the manager makes reference to the ages of the starting centre backs but left both of them on whilst bringing on a third. He thinks we shot ourselves in the foot. Maybe we did but I wonder who he thinks loaded the gun!
TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 4 SUNDERLAND 1
To concede 40 seconds after we scored is the biggest disappointment for me today.
We did most things right defensively up until then and we’d scored a superb goal before we went and shot ourselves in the foot. Had we gone in at half time with the score at 1-0 I think it could have been a different game.
We did tire towards the end and our energy was diminishing, but ultimately we’ve been beaten by a very good team.
We gave the goals away far too easy; we should have been a lot tighter.
I made changes as I thought our legs were running out and I wanted us to stay in the game, it’s the aftermath of three big away games and it was to be expected. John O’Shea and Wes Brown are both in their 30s and were maybe feeling it a little bit, I brought on another defender to try and tighten it up.
It was [Jan] Kirchhoff’s first-ever game in the Premier League, it had to happen at some stage and it was always going to be a risk, he needs to get up to speed with the pace of the game and learn quickly.
However, I think our problem today was leaving ourselves open. After we scored, we just let Spurs run right through us and we conceded. We weren’t a tight compact unit like we should have been.
[Jordan]Pickford is a good lad, he’s gained plenty of experience out on loan and that’s helped him a great deal. He came in and he looked very comfortable for someone of his age. He’s got a bright future ahead of him.
Thanks for your support,