Poyet demands improvement from Sunderland for Liverpool game

Sunderland manager Gustavo Poyet.
Sunderland manager Gustavo Poyet.
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GUS Poyet says he is not pushing the panic button just yet – despite a major defeat in the battle at the bottom at the weekend, writes GRAEME ANDERSON.

Sunderland’s 2-0 defeat at Carrow Road leaves them seven points behind Norwich City in the Premier League table, going into a daunting trip to Liverpool on Wednesday.

Clawing back that sort of deficit at this stage of the season is a tall order for Sunderland, whose Premier League status suddenly looks a lot more precarious on the back of the weekend result.

But the club’s head coach is not yet ready to ring the alarm bells.

“I worried a lot more when we had one point from our first eight games,” he pointed out.

“Now that we are in the mix though, with games in hand, I’m not as worried..

“Other results went for us, but our game did not, and that’s the most important thing – that’s what concerns me.”

Poyet says Sunderland cannot afford any repetition of the laxness they showed against Norwich – and certainly not the laziness, physical and mental shown in the opening half-hour at Carrow Road.

Norwich punished them for that listlessness at the weekend – if Sunderland produce the same quality of display against title-chasing Liverpool at Anfield on Wednesday, they are likely to be torn apart.

Poyet said: “We have to make it happen for ourselves. We have to play 90 minutes every game.

“We do not have an easy game midweek against Liverpool in which to bounce back. But we have to go there and give it our best.

“We have to fight for everything.”