Danny Batth has this message for Sunderland fans and Black Cats team-mates after damaging Cheltenham Town defeat

Sunderland defender Danny Batth has called for unity following Sunderland’s 2-1 defeat at Cheltenham.

The Black Cats have won just one of their last seven games, including three successive defeats in League One.

Batth joined the club from Stoke in January and is seen as one of the more experienced members of the group.

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The 31-year-old admits it’s been a challenging start to his Black Cats career but says the squad must repay the loyal supporters – after 1,520 travelling fans made the trip to Cheltenham.

Sunderland defender Danny Batth.

“I think you have got to reflect first of all which is very important and you have to do, say and work incredibly hard,” said Batth.

“You have to work so much harder when momentum is against you and I think that is important.

“We have to travel back down, recover right, eat right and prepare, looking forward to the next game now and learn valuable lessons.

“It’s a case of repaying the supporters for their incredible support.

“Since I’ve come, I’ve not been here a long time, but I can't say about how well they’ve done, and likewise the staff standing in.

“They have set us up and done everything right off the pitch and given us every opportunity to get a result today and obviously we haven’t done that.

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“As players we are at the forefront of it and we have to react now, do the right thing and get a big result for this club.”

Batth was the captain at former clubs Wolves and Stoke, and has been praised for his leadership qualities and professionalism since joining Sunderland.

When asked if he’s been giving advice to the younger members of the group, Batth added: “Obviously it’s tough for the young lads at the moment but they are good players and they can handle it.

“It won’t be my first period of bad results, I know how to get through it and the luck will turn.

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“There is nothing more to be said, you don’t want to be overtalking it and overhyping it, I think the main thing is the lads have to look at the goals.

“They were both fortunate and we have to react.”

An interim coaching team, led by Mike Dodds, have taken charge of the team’s last two matches, though it is hoped a permanent head coach will be in place for Saturday’s trip to AFC Wimbledon.

“I think every game is a big game when you are chasing promotion and every point is valuable,” said Batth when asked about that fixture.

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“We have to go into every game with the mentality where first of all we don’t get beat but try and take the three points.

“The support has been incredible so far despite the results.

“We have to dig deep and repay that because we are so lucky and it’s a privilege to play for the club.

“That is the reason I came here because I want to take the club in the right direction.

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“We have to reflect, pull together as a group and come through the other end.”

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