I DON’T know what it is that happens to Sunderland when they go to Everton!
No matter what team the Blues put out, no matter how well Sunderland might have been playing, we never win there and generally, we leave with a big, fat nothing.
Monday’s game was no exception, although I have to say that losing 4-0, to a side in which Tim Cahill, Nikica Jelavic and Leighton Baines had been rested was right up there with our worst results at our bogey ground.
It was all the more disappointing because you sensed the game was there for the taking if we could have grabbed it by the scruff of the neck.
The first half was played with all the intensity of a pre-season friendly and, at the break in the Press Room, I was talking up our chances of taking all three points after the break.
The minds of Everton’s fans and players were clearly, elsewhere, with the FA Cup semi-final against Liverpool this weekend and I really felt the game was there to be taken.
It was as it turned out – only it was Everton who took it!
Granted, they produced some decent finishes to win the game, but Sunderland should have been better all over the pitch and this has to go down as one of the most disappointing results of the O’Neill reign.
Read more of Gary Rowell’s comments in today’s Echo.