Jack Ross angered by manner of Sunderland’s defeat at Fleetwood

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Sunderland boss Jack Ross was angry after his side saw their slim automatic promotion hopes ended following a 2-1 defeat at Fleetwood.

Sunderland boss Jack Ross was angry after his side saw their slim automatic promotion hopes ended following a 2-1 defeat at Fleetwood.

The Black Cats had to win to stand any chance of catching Luton and Barnsley but despite going in front through Lee Cattermole’s header, second-half goals from Paddy Madden and Ashley Eastham ensured the play-offs beckon.

Ross said: ‘We can’t keep getting ourselves ahead in games, we can’t keep creating opportunities and not being more ruthless and then capitulating in that manner from winning positions.

‘I’m angry about how that came about as we had parts of the game where we could have won it, but we didn’t and it means we know where we are going to be.

‘People can say it was still confirmed before tonight, but it wasn’t.

‘Over the last three games collectively – Peterborough, Portsmouth and tonight – we have missed chances for the scoreline in all three games to be different.

‘We didn’t take those chances and we didn’t keep those clean sheets and it has cost us, so it’s not a good recipe.

‘You can’t shy away from the results over the last three games not being good enough for us to get in that top two.

Fleetwood boss Joey Barton said: ‘I’m delighted for the lads.

‘We were up against it in the first half.

We played so well on Saturday that we needed a tactical tweak with Ched (Evans) and Harry (Souttar) being out, it was always going to be tough for us against a good Sunderland side.

‘We made a subtle change at half-time, poor Eddie Clarke missed out as we couldn’t have two left-backs on the pitch.

‘I challenged the lads to dig a performance out and everyone in the stadium will have seen that we looked the hungrier side before we got the goal and looked like the side who were trying to get automatically promoted.

‘They never know when they are beaten, they keep going and going and going and as a manager it’s all I can ask for.

‘I’m delighted for the lads and so proud to be involved with this football club and this group.’

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