Sunderland need better quality in final third, says Poyet

Wes Brown battles Burnley striker Lukas Jutkiewicz
Wes Brown battles Burnley striker Lukas Jutkiewicz
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“QUALITY” was Gus Poyet’s watch-word as he reflected on a missed opportunity at Turf Moor.

Sunderland spent the summer striving to upgrade a squad which produced a remarkable escape from the Premier League drop last season, yet there was precious little evidence of that extra proficiency against newly-promoted Burnley on Saturday.

While the Black Cats continued to highlight the improved resilience within their ranks, Gus Poyet’s side were plagued by sloppiness, particularly in the final third.

Poyet reflected after the 0-0 draw that it is the extra attacking quality which divides the top teams in the Premier League, and the price tags which go hand-in-hand with the division’s star performers.

And he admits that winless Sunderland are yet to click going forward to make the most of the attacking quality which they do have.

“If you don’t perform at the highest level, it’s very tight and there’s not too much difference,” said Poyet.

“Last week, Spurs were better than us, but we got a result somehow.

“I was expecting us to be more in control and create more chances at Burnley, but we got a point “You need to be good week in, week out, otherwise it’s tough to win games.

“It’s quality; quality in the last decisions, quality in the cross, quality in the last pass.

“That’s the most expensive part of the game.

“It’s fantastic in England that we’ve got Cesc Fabregas back to show everyone how to do it.

“I can tell you it’s very difficult to do it. That costs money and it’s only very special players.

“If it’s better than okay, I’m sure we’re going to win games.

“I’m calm, but I was expecting a little bit more and it didn’t work.”

Poyet described Sunderland’s performance at Turf Moor as “okay”, but insists that is not sufficient to record victories in the top flight.

“I think we started the first two or three games by under-performing for part of the game – 45 minutes here, 45 minutes there,” he added.

“Then we had a very difficult game against Spurs.

“Saturday was okay. But it’s not enough, you need to perform well, make better decisions, be better technically and finish better. When we get over the line that I call okay, we’ll be the team I want to see week in, week out.”

Sunderland were 15th in the table after Saturday’s draw, but wins for West Brom and Crystal Palace yesterday dropped the Black Cats two places to 17th, just outside the drpop zone.

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