Bruce: Arsenal trip continues Sunderland’s tough run

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STEVE BRUCE admits that Sunderland’s Premier League challenge isn’t getting any easier with the visit to title-chasing Arsenal this weekend.

The Black Cats go to the Emirates on Saturday on the back of a four-game losing streak and, with games against Liverpool and Manchester City to follow, there’s no let-up on the horizon for a team at risk of sliding down the table.

But the Sunderland manager says his side have triumphed from a tough run of fixtures before and he insists they can do so again.

“You get daunting sets of fixtures coming along in the Premier League and we’re in one of them now,” he shrugged.

“It’s inevitable, given how many top teams there are in the division.

“But the results don’t always work out how you might expect at first glance.

“I remember, after the Newcastle game, we had a tough run of fixtures and everyone predicted hard times ahead for us.

“But we did well, we beat Stoke, drew with Spurs and and got that great result against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge during that run.”

Bruce argues that there are no easy games now with just 10 games remaining, but he says that the one thing Sunderland have to do is stay focused.

“Regardless of who you play now – be they at the top of the league, or at the bottom – they’re all difficult because we’re getting to the business end of the season,” he said.

“We haven’t had the best of results over the last month or so, but we’ve got to still remain positive and hope we can go down to Arsenal and produced a performance and get a good result.

“We know how tough it will be at the Emirates, but we’ve had some good results against the top teams and we’ve got to keep at it and hope we can get that result which will turn it back in our favour again.”