WELL, that is just about as bad as I have felt all season and the second-half display ranks among the worst we have seen.
And yet everything was going reasonably well at half-time. When you are going through a bad run you need an early goal; we got that.
When you concede, you need a quick response; we got that.
It should have been the springboard for confidence to underpin the play. The first West Brom goal stemmed from our inability to attack a high ball in the box; defenders were virtually static.
I expected a response from the Baggies after the break and their two second-half goals stemmed from patient, passing football where the ball barely left the deck. Passing and movement – it’s simple really, whereas we huffed and puffed and eventually resorted to the usual tactic of hitting long balls from the back.
Brian Clough was spot-on when he used to say that if you have possession of the ball the opposition can’t hurt you. Why can’t we just keep possession and move around?
The nightmare situation continues regarding injuries and one must ask what is going on. Mensah seemed to land awkwardly after a header and both Richardson and Ferdinand pulled up after kicking the ball rather loosely.
The captain said they had clear-the-air talks after the Man City game; this week they need to have a full-blown conference because what is happening is simply unacceptable!
To read the rest of the Jury, please see tonight’s Sunderland Echo.