Injured Sunderland forward reveals his frustration as teammates scrap for Premier League survival

Duncan Watmore
Duncan Watmore
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Injured Duncan Watmore has spoken of his frustration at having to watch on from the stands as his Sunderland teammates scrap for Premier League survival.

The livewire forward was ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering cruciate knee ligament damage in the 2-1 win over Leicester City back in December.

Watmore's long-term injury is one of several blows this campaign, with Victor Anichebe, Lee Cattermole and Jan Kirchhoff among those have spent a lengthy spell inside the treatment room over the course of the campaign.

Sunderland are bottom and seven points adrift of safety ahead of Saturday's game away at Watford.

England Under-21 international Watmore says the injuries cannot be used as an excuse for this season's struggles and says the determination to stay up is burning as strong as ever in the Sunderland squad.

The 23-year-old is on the long road to recovery alongside midfielder Paddy McNair, with the pair helping keep each other's spirits up at the Academy of Light training base.

Watmore said: "It hasn’t helped our position in the league obviously with the injuries we’ve had, but as far as the team is concerned they’re just as focused as ever.

"You can’t use injuries as excuses and me and Paddy obviously feel very frustrated we can’t go out and help but you’ve got to just try, as an injured person, to do everything you can behind the scenes to keep morale up, keep working hard and make sure we can support the lads in whatever way we can," he told Sky Sports.

Watmore had been a regular under Moyes this season and had linked up well with Anichebe and Jermain Defoe during the club's run of four wins in seven games back in November and December before injury struck.

Watmore and McNair are both expected to be back for pre-season training.

It has been an eventful few months for Watmore after it emerged yesterday that the winger helped save the lives of three elderly passengers in a Barbados boat accident during a break last month.

Watmore and girlfriend Sophie were thrown overboard when a catamaran ploughed into the speedboat they were on during a fishing trip.

But he managed to get the three clear of the water before the coastguard arrived, climbing on to the catamaran to help pull up the other tourists and using his t-shirt to stem the bleeding from one victim's leg.