Gus Poyet looks for Sunderland to enforce their own must-win plans at Norwich City
10:29 19 March 2014
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Sunderland will arrive at Carrow Road aiming to make their Premier League clash a must-win occasion – but hoping for a better outcome than their last one.
Many Norwich City fans will feel victory is essential for the Canaries to avoid their own top-flight relegation.
However, the Black Cats’ plight is arguably far more serious – three points adrift in the relegation zone, but with the caveat of up to three games in hand on their rivals.
However, Sunderland’s must-win visit from Crystal Palace at the weekend only produced a goalless draw at the Stadium of Light – leaving manager Gus Poyet hoping for better at Norwich on Saturday.
“That’s the way – now we need to make that point be a good one by going and winning three at Norwich,” said Poyet.
“I remember in December everybody was saying ‘if you can nick something at Everton and beat Cardiff…’ – and then it was the other way around (beat Everton, then drew at Cardiff).
“The four points were there somehow, suffering one way and coming back encouraged the other way, because it’s like that.
“It’s going to be tight, winning is going to be a goal and we need to make sure we don’t give that goal away, we don’t give any mistakes, any presents to anyone. The future will tell if we are good enough to stay up or not.”
One blow for the Black Cats could be the absence of striker Steven Fletcher. And while Norwich have their own scoring problems, it’s worth noting Sunderland have only three goals in their last games – a recent record even worse than the Canaries’ tally of five.
“Look, I’m not going to put everything on luck but yes, sometimes you need an own goal, a deflected shot to go in, whatever,” added Poyet.
“It’s not going for us but we will keep trying. We lost Fletch, I hope with nothing serious, but he twisted his ankle badly and we are going to check on him to see the extent of the injury.
“But that’s why everybody needs to be ready, because the chance is coming for you and you need to take it.”