Sunderland on the brink and relying on others as Chris Coleman reacts to more dropped points

Sunderland's fading survival hopes were dealt another hefty blow after throwing away two more points at Reading - to leave Chris Coleman deeply frustrated.
Chris Coleman watches on.Chris Coleman watches on.
Chris Coleman watches on.

Sunderland fell behind to a 20th minute Liam Kelly penalty after Lee Camp's error, bringing down Jon Dadi Bodvarsson inside the area but they fought back well in the second half.

A stunning Paddy McNair strike was followed by Lee Cattermole's close-range header but the Black Cats couldn't hold on to what would have proved a huge three points.

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Instead, sub Yann Kermorgant denied them all three points when he headed in a Chris Gunter cross 11 minutes from time to leave Sunderland bottom after Burton Albion beat Derby County.

Sunderland are six points adrift with just three games to play, while rivals Barnsley have a game in hand.

Coleman said: "Three games running we have dropped points. We have done enough in games to earn all three points but given it up.

"Obviously it is critical for us at this stage of the season.

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"The performance and the mentality was spot on, brilliant, but it is those fine details we haven't taken care of, all season really.

"1-0 down to go 2-1 up, we haven't done that too many times this season and I can't say we were ever in too much difficulty.

"At that stage when it was 2-1, if anything we were going to score again. In fairness it was a great cross and header from Kermorgant.

"It is disappointing because we have given it up again.

"It is the traits of a team that has been down there a long time, in those final moments, those real pressurised moments in games when you can deal with it, we get that feeling of 'are we going to get punished?' And we do get punished.

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"It is those fine details that have let us down. Their attitude was fabulous, not much more I could ask in terms of their input in the game."

Clearly, Sunderland, who face Burton Albion at the Stadium of Light on Saturday, are running out of games despite a spirited recent run of performances.

It has left Sunderland relying on their rivals to drop points.

Coleman added: "Three games to go, six points in it.

"The ball is firmly in the other team's court. What we have to do is what we have been doing for the last four or five games and that is just go for it.

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"We have played all types of teams but our performance has been the same. We can't point too many fingers at the players over the last four or five games.

"We can over the course of the season but the last five games, there is not much more I can ask.

"Look at the stats, shots and possession, we have doubled attempted shots at goal and we have done that recently. It wasn't enough."