Manager's preview: Coleman on Hull City

Meet the challenge. It’s plain and simple.  

Chris Coleman says Sunderland’s players have just two options heading into the remainder of the Sky Bet Championship season, sink or swim.

This weekend they face a massive test – both physically and mentally – as Hull City travel to the Stadium of Light in a basement battle that could go a long way to defining both club’s fortunes come May.

Three points separate the sides heading into the game and a win for Wearside would see the Black Cats move above the Tigers, but if the pendulum swings the other way, Nigel Adkins' side would inflict a seismic blow.

Ahead of the game, the Sunderland manager pulled no punches and admitted his squad have to face up to their situation and tackle it head on.

“No, absolutely not,” said Coleman when asked if anyone could afford to feel sorry for themselves.

“Where do we turn from where we are? There’s nowhere to run and you can’t sit in the corner and shut the curtains, lock all the doors and hope all your problems go away – they’re not.”

He continued: “The players we’ve got fit, they’re the ones fighting.

“Alright, during the second-half against Cardiff individual errors absolutely finished us and we can’t do that, but there’s only ever two ways to look at it.

“Meet it, or duck it – I’ve said all along you’re not guaranteed anything and you never are, but our problems are what they are and we have to face that and change it.

“You do that by performing consistently, last week we performed for 45 minutes and for 45 minutes we didn’t, it’s plain and simple.

“It will be an exciting game and a stressful match for both parties, and they’ll look our situation and home record and think they can capitalise on that, so that’s something we have to overcome.

“All this is taken care of by a performance and not losing focus, staying calm and making sure we’re bright with a little bit of fire in our belly.

“Add all that into the mix and we’ll be okay.”

Back to top