Yann M’Vila believes Sunderland would have come away empty-handed at Chelsea, even if Jose Mourinho was still in charge at Stamford Bridge.
French international M’Vila was at a loss to explain why Sunderland were so hapless in the opening 45 minutes against the reigning Premier League champions, despite a tense atmosphere in West London which saw home fans boo Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas, and chant the name of the departed Mourinho.
They were able to win because we had so many poor moments. Whether Mourinho was the manager or not, that’s why they were able to win.Yann M’Vila
At times, M’Vila was almost single-handedly attempting to hold Sunderland’s midfield together, with Ola Toivonen – and, to a lesser extent, Jack Rodwell – chasing shadows.
But while Chelsea perhaps predictably improved after Mourinho’s dismissal and the return of caretaker boss Guus Hiddink, M’Vila says Sunderland were so bad that the managerial situation made no difference to the outcome.
He told the Echo: “If Mourinho was still there, I still think we would have lost.
“They were able to win because we had so many poor moments. Whether Mourinho was the manager or not, that’s why they were able to win.
“It’s us who allowed Chelsea to play. It was easy for them.
“They were able to play it from left-to-right and through the middle of us, and it’s no excuse that their manager had changed.
“They have got some very, very good players who can pose a lot of questions.
“But up to half-time, it was far too easy for them.”
Fabio Borini’s first goal of his second Sunderland spell gave the Black Cats a sniff of mounting an unlikely comeback, but after Chelsea had extended their advantage to 3-0 early in the second half, it proved to be an insurmountable task for Sam Allardyce’s side.
“It was too late after the goal,” he added.
“If it had come before the penalty, then maybe – at 2-1 you’ve got a chance.
“But coming back from 3-0 down, even at 3-1, it’s a big task, even though we had chances to score more goals.
“We were much better in the second half, but why didn’t we start like that?
“Why? I don’t understand it. It was a really poor first half from us.”