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Sunderland v Fulham: Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round Replay

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Two Up, Two Down: Sunderland edged out by Fulham in an entertaining FA Cup tie

Despite scoring two excellent goals, the Lads fell short against Marco Silva’s well-drilled visitors. What did our writers make of the game?

Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Anthony Gair says…

What a game!

We play great football, don’t we?

Even when it doesn’t click well as it should, we still create chances regardless of the opposition.

Fulham had to bring on arguably their two best players in Aleksandar Mitrović and Andreas Pereira to ensure they got over the line, and I’d argue that we were the better side in the second half.

It’s a shame we had to lose but it’s not the end of the world and it was a wonderful experience for the lads.

Some battling qualities on show

Even at 3-1 down, we didn’t stop pushing and were rewarded with Jewison Bennette’s cracking finish in stoppage time.

We should’ve been given a bit more time to see if we could level the game but again, it’s not the end of the world.

A few lapses in concentration

There were mistakes aplenty during the game, which can be accounted for as I’m sure there were a lot of nerves inside the Stadium of Light.

All three goals probably wouldn’t be conceded in a normal league game. Anthony Patterson looked nervous from the start, but we can’t lose faith because of this.

These boys will come out in the next game and give their all as they always do. Win, lose or draw, we can cheer them off the field.

Aleksandar Mitrović!

It would be the former Newcastle striker who played a big role in Fulham’s victory, wouldn’t it?

Sunderland v Fulham: Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round Replay Photo by Martin Swinney/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Jon Guy says…

A great display of character

We started slowly and fell behind to a soft goal but we got back into it and started the second so brightly. Even when we went 2-0 down against the run of play, we dug in.

When the third goal went in and some of the fans decided that was it, the team didn’t.

It’s a real team that we’re building here.

Dan Ballard impresses again

What a player he’s turning out to be.

It was a brilliant block in the first half to deny what looked like a goal and he never shirked a challenge.

He’s confident on the ball and he’s becoming a real leader.

Squad depth is a concern

Tony Mowbray doesn’t have a great deal of options from the bench.

Jewison Bennette came on and made a difference, as did Alex Pritchard, but as the games come thick and fast, the worry is that we might struggle if injuries occur.

A lack of physicality

We looked fairly lightweight at the start of the game.

We need a physical presence in the middle, and while Pierre Ekwah came on in the second half, the challenge of playing a Premier League side was evident.

They’re young and they’re still learning, but it’s where we miss the likes of Corry Evans who can deliver the experience that’s needed.

Kelvin Beattie says…

Trai Hume stands out

What a good game he had.

With Fulham pushing hard down both flanks, he defended intelligently and with plenty of bite in the tackle.

On one occasion, he lost a challenge and the ball, and sprinted half the length of the pitch to win it back.

Ballard in good company

Dan Ballard continues to impress and he looked like he was enjoying the company last night.

His strength on the ball and in the air was impressive on a night when our collective effort was commendable.

Prima donnas and gullible officials

It might just be me, but I get sick of officials who are conned week in and week out by players flapping and pirouetting to the ground to win free kicks.

Fulham seemed to have an abundance of these ‘flappers’ and the officials appeared happy to oblige!

Early departures

What was the exodus on eighty two minutes about?

Our team were busting a gut and deserved your full attention for ninety minutes. Yes, Fulham had just scored, but that’s when we should stand and offer our support.

Well done to those that stayed. There was lots of noise for Jewison Bennette’s goal and some good appreciation at the final whistle.

Sunderland v Fulham: Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round Replay Photo by Richard Sellers/Getty Images


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