Sunderland must overcome Redknapp affect, says Sess

Stephane Sessegnon
Stephane Sessegnon
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STEPHANE Sessegnon insists it is crucial that Sunderland overcome the curse of the new manager and restore some cheer at the Stadium of Light tomorrow night.

Sunderland face an ominous meeting with basement boys QPR tomorrow, in Harry Redknapp’s first official game in charge of the club since succeeding the sacked Mark Hughes.

Redknapp was only in the stands for QPR’s 3-1 defeat at Manchester United on Saturday, but witnessed his new charges rattle the league leaders before being downed by three goals inside eight second half minutes.

But Sessegnon knows Sunderland cannot afford to concern themselves with the fortunes of the top flight’s only winless side after succumbing to a third successive home defeat against high-flying West Brom.

Sunderland were unable to harness the boost from their victory at Fulham six days earlier and Sessegnon says Saturday’s 4-2 loss has made tomorrow’s Stadium of Light encounter all the more important.

Sessegnon told the Echo: “We must win.

“It’s hugely important that we get a win tomorrow because it’s another chance for us here.

“We know it’s going to be difficult against a team fighting at the bottom of the table, but it’s clear we need to get some wins and pick up some points.

“It’s never easy against a team with a new manager.

“They’re a team who wouldn’t have expected to be at the bottom at the start of the season.

“They will feel they are capable of much better and I’m sure they’ll be boosted by a new manager.

“But at the same time, we’ve got to be confident that we can get a victory after the disappointment of Saturday.”

A stellar display from Sessegnon wasn’t sufficient for the Black Cats after finding themselves two goals down before the interval, through Zoltan Gera’s long-range effort and an uncharacteristic clanger from Simon Mignolet on the stroke of half-time.

Although Craig Gardner’s deflected free-kick and then Sessegnon’s second in as many games gave Sunderland hope of a point, the Baggies swiftly restored their two-goal advantage on both occasions.

Sessegnon added: “I thought we had the chance to get something out of the game. There were a few scrambles in the box, even after they scored the third.

“We had a very good opening to the game and created quite a few opportunities. But unfortunately West Brom scored which made it difficult for us.

“They’ve been doing very well and we knew it was going to be tough. But we still created more chances, only to concede an unfortunate goal just before half-time.

“That goal came at a crucial time and made it really hard for us to get anything out of the match.

“After we continued to try to get the goal and we had to take some risks to score.

“West Brom still had chances, but we gave everything to get something out of it. But when we did score, they got their lead back straightaway.”