GARY ROWELL: Sunderland can not have been over-confident at Swansea

After three wins in our previous four games, Sunderland could not have gone into the huge relegation clash with Swansea in better spirits.

Tuesday, 13th December 2016, 11:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 14th December 2016, 12:39 pm
Wahbi Khazri
Wahbi Khazri

So it was a massive disappointment they produced one of their worst performances so far.

To be more accurate, it was the second 45 minutes where we didn’t turn up as going in at half-time all square there was little between the two teams but we collapsed after the break, conceding a debatable penalty.

Patrick van Aanholt tries to get Sunderland going at Swansea

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But for a couple of Jordan Pickford saves the scoreline could have been worse.

It’s been said Sunderland were over-confident after the recent run, but if that is true they should not have been, as no team in the bottom three can afford to be complacent.

As soon as any team in the Premier League switches off, even for just a second, they will be punished and Saturday’s defeat has to be a wake-up call that the recent good run has not suddenly made everything all right.

The first goal in any game is always crucial and I felt the penalty award against Jason Denayer was harsh but that is the only complaint I’ve got and it’s not an excuse for what happened afterwards.

Patrick van Aanholt tries to get Sunderland going at Swansea

One of the biggest disappointments of the whole afternoon was that we failed to score against a team that conceded nine in its previous two games.

I know hindsight is a wonderful thing but maybe it would have been better to replace Duncan Watmore with the extra attacking threat of Wahbi Khazri or Adnan Januzaj.

The Swansea back four must have gone into the match with very little confidence and belief but we did not put them under any real pressure and did not force a save from Lukasz Fabianski until it was too late as we let one of the division’s leakiest defences off the hook.