Tony Mowbray admits to failing after Sunderland defeat to Cardiff.
TONY MOWBRAY is desperate to find the “killer touch” required for Sunderland to deliver more magic at the Stadium of Light.
The Black Cats boss was left frustrated yesterday as Cardiff City, who set up to defend and make things difficult from the first whistle, stunned Wearside with an 87th-minute winner.
Bluebirds defender Mark McGuinness was the match-winner in an attacking sense, but he was also part of a resilient backline that dug deep to keep Sunderland at bay.
When Mowbray’s adventurous youngsters did break through they found former Sunderland academy goalkeeper Jak Alnwick, who previously played for Newcastle, in fine form.
The defeat was Sunderland’s second at home during an impressive start to the season.
Mowbray wants to find a way to win more games on Wearside knowing they have back-to-back home dates with Watford and Middlesbrough after Friday’s trip to Sheffield Wednesday.
He said: “Our record at home, we spoke about last year. The reason why we win more games away from home is because we need to find that killer touch against teams who put ten men behind the ball for 90 minutes here.
“We just didn’t get in the positions to finish it off. We just didn’t find the answer – Cardiff kept it really tight. We have to find a way to break team downs.
“Hopefully I’m humble enough to say well done to them, they made it difficult for us and good luck to them. There were lots of positives for our team, and trying to score when there are eight men inside the box is difficult.
“Sometimes you have to shoot from 25 yards, and they could go in. if you don’t shoot you don’t score. You can’t always score the perfect goal.”
Sunderland had six shots on target and 16 wayward efforts during a game in which they had 66 per cent of the possession. Crucially, though, McGuinness scored from Cardiff’s second effort on target.
Mowbray said: “We shouldn’t be too disappointed, they gave it a real go. We found it last year, teams will come and defend here, get men behind the ball and they were very resilient.
“We have to find that extra bit of quality. It felt like we dominated the game, and it could have been a nice 1-0 win for us. I didn’t think Cardiff looked like winning the game but they have nicked one in the end. It’s frustrating for us really.”