Sunderland boss on Jonny Williams injury and why he brought Joel Asoro off

Chris Coleman says Joel Asoro is still battling through injury after substituting him early in the second half.

Saturday, 10th March 2018, 5:28 pm
Updated Saturday, 10th March 2018, 5:35 pm
Williams is facing another spell on the sidelines

Coleman was forced to sacrifice a forward player after Jason Steele was sent off early in the second half, and opted for Asoro rather than Ashley Fletcher, who continues to struggle up front.

That decision drew fury from the travelling support but Coleman says he did not want to be forced into using all his substitutions.

Aiden McGeady had replaced the injured Jonny Williams in the first half. There were ironic cheers in the closing minutes as Fletcher was replaced by Josh Maja.

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Coleman said: "Joel only had an hour [in him]. He took a right good whack against Middlesbrough, didn't train for the week after. He could only have an hour today. I didn't want to change Ash and then have to change again soon after. It was the safer bet, that was it."

Coleman admits he fears he could again be without Williams for a period of time after the Welsh international limped off following a collision.

He will now join midfielders Darron Gibson and Paddy McNair on the sidelines as the Sunderland boss struggles to find solution's to the club's poor form.

Coleman said: "Jonny is a super player, he keeps on playing catch-up, another game that we've lost a man in the first half. He was important, too, the way we wanted to set-up, a vital cog. He could be out for another week or two, so there's another couple without him. I think he had a kick on the quad and it has impacted his hamstring but I won't know exactly until next time I come in.