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Player Ratings: Sunderland 1-2 MK Dons - Three defeats on the trot for Parkinson’s sorry side

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Sunderland gave a pathetic performance this afternoon, losing 2-1 to an MK Dons side who have not won away from home since 2019. Here’s how Jimmy Lowson rated the SAFC players.

Sunderland v Milton Keynes Dons - Sky Bet League One
Get yer coat, Phil
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Getty Images

Remi Matthews: 7/10

Looked secure in his handling and kicking, could do nothing about Cameron Jerome’s outstanding headed finish.

He kept Sunderland’s chances alive until the death with a great save one-on-one from Scott Fraser.

Jordan Willis: 5/10

Began to defend with his usual intensity in the latter stages of the match, but could barely string a pass together all game, still hampered by an injury and out of sorts.

Bailey Wright: 7/10

Had difficulties dealing with a rejuvenated Jerome, and endured some uncharacteristically sloppy moments in possession, but was a real asset overall, some of his second half long range passing was outstanding.

Luke O’Nien: 5/10

O’Nien made a few great challenges in his final third and linked up well in attack, but just looks awkward playing in defence.

The most challenging aspect of playing centre half for the converted midfielder was knowing what to do in transition, MK Dons cleverly exploited his indecisive positioning when possible.

Lynden Gooch: 5/10

It was Gooch’s excellent driven cross that caused the chaos that led to Power’s opener, but that was overshadowed by his poor play in general.

Gooch gave away the ball cheaply more often than not and was responsible for the first MK Dons goal, fouling stupidly when the Milton Keynes midfielder had overran the ball.

Grant Leadbitter: 7/10

Who knows what the half-time scoreline would have been without Leadbitter’s defensive awareness. Leadbitter was somehow not only Sunderland’s most alert defender, but also the team’s most purposeful passer.

Max Power: 4/10

Scored with a ferocious, albeit deflected strike, but struggled to build off that impactful goal. Too often Power took himself out of the game by overpressing and his passing was substandard.

His concession of a second half penalty was indicative of his performance and season so far, poor technique compounded by a poor mental error, just not good enough.

Josh Scowen: 5/10

Scowen put in a lot of effort pressing, but didn’t show enough class on the ball, too often he gave possession away trying to link up with teammates with his back to goal.

Denver Hume: 4/10

Started the game well, crashing into a couple brilliant challenges, before regressing badly. His quality just wasn’t there. He gave conceded possession time and time again, and let the hosts build momentum by constantly giving away the cheapest of fouls.

Charlie Wyke: 6/10

Worked tirelessly and did a decent job bringing others into play at times, but ultimately Wyke just didn’t affect the game enough and went through long phases of the match without contributing.

Will Grigg: 4/10

You could feel the moment all the confidence exited Grigg’s body. Played through on goal by Leadbitter, he tried to finish first time and ended up kicking air. Grigg looked lightweight and indecisive after that.

The second half miss from point blank range felt like a sign, this guy is just never going to succeed on Wearside. Annoyingly the Northern Ireland international had started well, nearly setting up Gooch, after winning possession by MK’s byline.

(SUB) Chris Maguire: 5/10

Played deeper than usual did a decent job recycling possession, unfortunately his teammates didn’t show anywhere near enough quality when played into one-on-one situations out wide.

(SUB) Danny Graham: 4/10

Same as always Graham looked too slow and unathletic to trouble any League One defender.

(SUB) Jack Diamond: n/a

Came on with five minutes remaining.

Man of the Match

Grant Leadbitter