Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce is upbeat about his side’s chances this weekend, citing confidence from their win last week.
The Black Cats are currently sat in the relegation zone, but gave themselves a huge boost by beating Norwich City last week, leaving them only one point into the drop zone.
The former Newcastle and West Ham boss revealed he was set to bring the same approach to the upcoming game this weekend, having set-up in order to counter attack, much in the way that the Hammers did to deny the Gunners the three points two weeks ago.
“We have Arsenal to face on Sunday and they played well to beat West Brom on Thursday – it was at their ground, though, and they can find it a bit more difficult away from home,”Allardyce said.
“They have slipped up a few times recently with a couple of draws they will have thought they should have won.
“They were 2-0 up against West Ham and could have lost, and they drew against a Crystal Palace team that played a very good counter-attacking game just as we did at Norwich.
“We need to be at our best to nullify Arsenal’s passing game, and then try and counter-attack and expose some of the defensive weaknesses that they generally leave on the basis of Arsene’s philosophy.
“Keeping the ball, passing and moving, attacking and trying to break down the opposition does sometimes leave space at the back for us to exploit.”
Our win on Thursday gave us the advantage in the race to cement a place in the top four, and we cannot afford another slip this week, but Sunderland won’t be giving us an easy ride either.
This weekend it will most likely come down to who wants it more, and with all our distractions at present, I’m not sure if that will be us. Do you think we want it enough?