‘We need to stand up and be counted.’
Sunderland midfielder Craig Gardner pulled no punches after his side fell to defeat at the hands of Norwich City.
Gardner gave his side a glimmer of hope in the 2-1 reverse with his bullet of a goal moments before half time at Carrow Road.
In the second half we were the better team and created chances – I had one cleared off the line and hit the post, Killa hit one over, Sess could have scored – I could go on.
- Craig Gardner
He almost salvaged a point for the Black Cats, only for the goal post to deny his second half free kick.
Following the game a frustrated Gardner said: “We've just got to take our chances. It's taking us a while to get into games.
“In the second half we were the better team and created chances – I had one cleared off the line and hit the post, Killa hit one over, Sess could have scored – I could go on.
“We need to stand up and be counted and take our chances. We can't keep doing this after games, saying 'it'll come, it'll come'. We need to make it come.”
Sunderland have picked up four points in their last four outings and have scored six goals.
The Black Cats’ next two fixtures are both at the Stadium of Light and Gardner knows how important it is to get a good start in those games.
“We're frustrated but we have a tough game coming up against Chelsea now and we need to take hold of games from the start, not just from the start of the second half.” Gardner continued.
“We started off slowly again against Norwich and found ourselves two goals down.
“Not many teams play Norwich off the park at home – which is what we did in the second half.
“It's there, we can do it but we need to do it from start to finish.
The midfielder concluded with a message for the 1,000 plus supporters who made the trip to East Anglia: “The fans were brilliant and we need them singing their hearts out again on Saturday like they did today.”