Sunderland fatigue won't be an issue against Arsenal, says Duncan Watmore

Sunderland have no time to lick their wounds after the EFL Cup exit, with Arsenal the visitors to the Stadium of Light tomorrow lunchtime.
Duncan WatmoreDuncan Watmore
Duncan Watmore

Duncan Watmore insists that the gruelling schedule of a midweek trip to Southampton, followed by an early kick-off, won’t be used as an excuse, though, as Sunderland look to bring an end to their winless start to the league campaign.

The Black Cats’ preparations have not been helped by an extended stay on the south coast – fog prevented their flight home taking off on Wednesday night.

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It meant the players were put through a recovery session yesterday ahead of their return to Wearside.

David Moyes is yet to celebrate a league win, with his side five points adrift of safety at the foot of the Premier League table.

Watmore, a first-team regular under Moyes since the Scot took charge, says the backroom staff do everything possible to give the team the best chance of winning.

“I think we’ve got to recover well and do everything to the best of our ability to make sure we’re fresh for Arsenal,” said the England Under-21 international.

“The staff at the club are fantastic for that.

“They do everything top-drawer.

“We don’t have any excuses for that.

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“We’ve got all the facilities, all the staff to make us recover fast.

“I don’t think we need to go into Saturday with any excuses. We’ve got to go into it positive.”

Sunderland head into the Arsenal game on the back of two 1-0 defeats, with the last-minute defeat to West Ham followed by the fourth-round EFL Cup exit to the Saints.

Watmore, though, insists the games can’t come round quickly enough at the moment, as Sunderland go in search of their first league win.

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The 22-year-old added: “We want to play games and we want to win games and sometimes in this position the best thing is to keep playing and make sure you change it around as fast as you can.

“Whoever it is, you’ve got to play the opposition in front of you to the best of your ability.

“We’ll try to do that tomorrow and hopefully we can give the fans something to cheer about.

“Sometimes you need that luck when you’re down there, but you’ve got to earn that luck by doing the right things, being positive and working hard.

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“We know we can do a job on Arsenal and we’ve got to try to do that.

“We’ve got to work hard in training, play Arsenal to the best of our ability and make sure we get a result.

“I think we can do that and we’ve got to try to do that.”