Gareth Ainsworth has emphatic message on Phil Parkinson and 'outstanding' Sunderland's promotion hopes

Gareth Ainsworth says Phil Parkinson’s ‘outstanding’ Sunderland side are set to mount a big challenge for promotion.

Sunday, 12th January 2020, 6:00 am
Updated Sunday, 12th January 2020, 1:02 pm

The Black Cats cut the gap to Ainsworth’s Wycombe at the top of League One to six points with a superb 4-0 victory.

Ainsworth says the Black Cats boss is being rewarded for some ‘brave’ decisions, having taken 10 points from their last four games.

“It was a difficult afternoon made more difficult by an outstanding Sunderland performance,” he said.

Sign up to our Sunderland AFC newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Charlie Wyke puts Sunderland ahead at the Stadium of Light

“Phil has done a magnificent job getting a system that works and with players in to work it.

“You've got to give him credit.

“It was a tough afternoon for Wycombe but Sunderland away is a tough afternoon for many clubs and I think we'll be one of many who come here and struggle.

“We were second best at a lot of things today but we were made second best, there's some superb footballers here and fans who get right behind the team.

“They never let us get going,” he added.

“The penalty is the killer for me, at 2-0 you've always got a chance if you can just find that one goal and make it a bit nervy.

“There was no chance of that today, they were excellent.

“It's a different atmosphere totally.

“I think there was a little bit disarray but Phil has made some big decisions.

“They've taken a few weeks for him to see the benefits of. He's been a been brave man to do it but you live and die by your decisions and he's proven that he's right.

“That was outstanding, you have to give him, the fans and the players a credit.”

Ainsworth urged his side to remain upbeat after the result, praising their outstanding start to the season.

“We're firmly on track to improve from last season, and that was always the aim,” he said.

“I'm so proud of where we've been.

“The lads are so pumped and so want to achieve but we've got make sure that we remain a humble club.

“We're honoured to come here, this is why we got promoted and hopefully we'll be back, but Sunderland look like they're going to put together a big promotion challenge.”