Should have been out of sight at half time, played some lovely stuff. Best Ive seen us pass the ball since I don't know when.
Second half we let them build up a head of steam. They are a good side and very strong at home so it was unreasonable perhaps to expect us to boss the game from start to finish but the way some of our midfielders disappeared was frustrating.
Pluses: Keane was unplayable in the first half, Dozzell looked as good as he can and Downes and Woolfenden...you can see why we will be lucky to hold onto them if we don't go up.
Our midfielders HAVE to start making better choices in the final third (Edwards overcooked his cross in the first half when a more measured ball would have given Judge a tap-in) and maybe shoot once in a while. Judge, Nolan and Edwards in particular were known for scoring long-range screamers before they came to us. People get fixated on the strikers when we don't kill off games but the midfield needs to weigh in with some goals soon.
So frustrating to draw that one, but the plus point is that we easily contained one of the pre-season promotion favourites and a club with parachute payments still. Actually feel sorry for Chambers, he broke off from the handshake line before kick off ahead of all the rest of the Town players and sprinted to the area looking genuinely delighted to be back on the pitch. Must have felt pretty low afterwards because as Lambert said, without that mistake we win the game - Sunderland didn't open us up once.
Rowe looked dangerous and Woolfenden was superb. Downes was great as well. The manager makes a lot of the fact that we have a young team and that might count against us at times but today it was the senior players who let us down, Chambers and then Judge. Did depress me a bit how quickly some of our knuckle draggers got on Judge's back though, including one lad in front of me who kept shouting "just go" whenever he made a mistake. Transfer window's closed pal. And he'll come good.