Sunderland must focus solely on relegation fight, insists David Moyes

Sunderland must focus solely on relegation fight, insists David Moyes

David Moyes has insisted that Sunderland must solely focus on relegation fight.

Danial Kennedy

Sunderland manager, David Moyes has stated his players must focus solely on their battle at the bottom of the Premier League table after Saturday's 1-0 win over Watford.

One focus

Things were looking grim once again on Wearside, after Wednesday's 1-0 defeat to Chelsea left them right at the bottom of the Premier League table. However a narrow 1-0 victory over Watford on Saturday brought them back to the brink of safety with one point separating them and 17th-placed Crystal Palace.

The Black Cats face a tough festive period with their first of their three matches coming on Boxing Day against Manchester United, but Moyes insisted that their focus should still be on getting out of their relegation dogfight.

"I’ve not spoken to the players about it," Moyes told Sunderland Echo. "Because I see that the players’ task is to focus on their jobs to focus on the next game."

“And they’re galvanised in the dressing-room just now," he stated. "They know how big a win it was for us because we’ve been saying it to them since Wednesday night how important it was."

"They’ve been here before some of them [in a relegation fight], not all of them," the Scotsman admitted. "But I’ve not spoken to them about anything else because, at the end of the day, it’s up to them to do their best.“

Moyes continued, "They’re paid well as professionals. Their job isn’t to worry about anything going on off the field.”


Keep it going

It was full-back Patrick van Aanholt that was the hero at the weekend, with the Dutchman's 49th-minute effort giving them the win and the 26-year-old stated that side need to move onto the next clash.

“It was a must win game, that’s what the gaffer told us before kick-off,” he said. “We got out there and at half-time we still had a clean sheet and a couple of chances."

He continued, “The gaffer told us to keep going and that the chances would fall," the full-back added. "Thankfully they did and I was able to score."

The Dutchman stated, “We always have to battle and I think we did a good job today. We kept a clean sheet and that has won us the game – thankfully we got the three points."

He added, “Sometimes you have got to just win games and so against Watford that was important." van Aanholt concluded, "But now we have to move onto the next one.”

Sunderland AFC will visit Manchester United at Old Trafford on Monday, December 26 with kick-off at 3pm GMT.