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Sunderland v Burnley - Sky Bet Championship

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Roker Roundtable: Can Sunderland respond after their defeat to Burnley?

With a trip to Luton on Saturday, the Lads have five days to recover and prepare for the game at Kenilworth Road - can they bounce back?

Photo by Michael Driver/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Gav says…

Sunderland have given every team we’ve faced this season a good game, so I can’t see any logical reason why we won’t rebound, unless we suffer more injuries to key players.

Tony Mowbray needs to learn from what went wrong on Saturday, but also what went right.

In the first half we were immense and Burnley were poor. We all know how the second half went, and most of that came down to mentality; for whatever reason, we didn’t reemerge from the break with the right focus, and Burnley pulled us to pieces.

However, that’s in the past now. Luton are the next team on Mowbray’s hitlist and we need to ensure that we don’t do the same daft things again.

Bottling tackles, allowing wide players too much room to run at us, failing to complete whatever your individual task is on corners, your goalkeeper using his nous to win free kicks and when claiming high balls - these are all basics, and if we work on those over the coming days, we’ll be fine.

I feel like now that he’s got his feet firmly under the table, Mowbray needs to be more ruthless with his decision making during games.

Bring players off if you can feel the momentum shifting in the game - don’t wait until it’s too late, like we did at the weekend, and we’ll be fine.

The players are all well-drilled on how we do things and they just have to do their jobs and with full commitment. We play good football, we can score goals (even without strikers) and we just have to defend better. Remember how we got promoted last season, through being resilient and compact, and the rest will follow.

Sunderland v Burnley - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Alex Dodd - CameraSport via Getty Images

Kev Barker says…

I’m more hopeful than confident.

We’ve gone from the sublime to the ridiculous, and consistency- both as individuals and as a team- has eluded us so far this season.

Watching the Burnley goals back highlighted individual errors more than anything. Anthony Patterson should’ve claimed ball for the second goal, Trai Hume needed to clean out his man for the third, and Dan Neil getting caught in possession for the last goal was so frustrating.

A week is a long time in football and the overreaction to Saturday’s game will have died down by the time we travel to Luton.

On our day we can beat any team in the league, so let’s hope we go with a game plan and play for the full ninety minutes rather than in bursts!


Mark Carrick says…

On Saturday, I think the first 45 minutes showed that we are a match for even the best and most experienced teams in this division.

Our pressing, passing, and finishing was outstanding. Down the right, Trai Hume and Amad Diallo were mightily impressive and Dennis Cirkin was allowed to move forward at will.

In the second half, Burnley came out with a plan to stifle us and prevent our players from having such an influence, and the goals we conceded were a mixture of poor fortune, misjudgement, or simply due to the skill of the opposition.

We do need to cut out the mistakes and get players back from injury, but we still have enough to go to Luton and get a result.

Before Saturday, we’d have taken two points from two tough games. Now, perhaps, the players have to turn up, prove to themselves that they have what it takes by putting that second half behind them, and taking maximum points.

Sunderland v Burnley - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Alex Dodd - CameraSport via Getty Images

Kelvin Beattie says…

My view is that we will recover, though I don’t agree that we ‘collapsed’ in the second half.

If we can replicate anything close to our first half performance for the ninety minutes, then we stand a good chance of getting something out of this game. I believe that the response to our second half performance has been slightly exaggerated, and with Burnley being the best team I have see us play this season and individual errors leading to three of the second half goals, it is time to calm down.

Luton present a very different challenge to Burnley and I fancy that will lend themselves to our game.

They shipped four goals against Watford on Sunday, and this could either galvanise them or sow the seed of a bad run, which could continue against the Lads.

I would expect a reaction to our defeat- we were well beaten in the second half and the mass exodus that proceeded the fourth goal should not have gone over the heads of our players. That said, we will need to show more bottle than these ‘early birds’ if we are to come away with anything.


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