Sunderland enter FA Cup action this weekend off the back of a three game losing streak in League One.
Defeats to Charlton Athletic, Rotherham United and Sheffield Wednesday, the last two of which were heavy, have seen the Black Cats fall away from the automatic promotion spots as their rivals go from strength to strength.
Lee Johnson is clearly aware of the desperate form and completely understands the supporters’ frustrations, the 40-year-old vowed to do everything in his power to get the club out of the third tier this season when he spoke to ChronicleLive.
He said: “What can we promise? We can promise to give our absolute best at any moment.
“I can’t promise promotion, but I can promise that I will do everything in my power and die in a ditch trying to deliver promotion. There are so many points to play for, we’ve won a lot of games already this year, so let’s just take a breath.”
Sunderland have the chance to get back to winning ways when they host Mansfield Town in the FA Cup on Saturday afternoon. The Stags beat Sunderland 1-0 in the identical fixture in the FA Cup first round last season and therefore will not be lacking belief at the Stadium of Light.
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Lee Johnson’s men fell away from the automatic promotion picture at a crucial time last season and that poor form persisted as they were brushed aside by Lincoln City in the play-offs. Patience will be waning in the stands the longer it goes on before Sunderland stop the rot.
With the international break on the horizon Johnson has time to hit the reset button and iron out their shortcomings on the training ground before they host Ipswich Town on 20th November. A loss against the Tractor Boys could see the Black Cats fall out of the top six which would certainly give the club’s hierarchy a lot to ponder.
Sunderland have been irresistible in patches this season but the expectant home crowd will not be content with what could be a fifth season in the third tier if promotion is not delivered.