SUNDERLAND fans were dreaming of a second trip to Wembley in as many months, but a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Hull City last weekend dashed their hopes of competing in the FA Cup semi-final against Sheffield United.
The Black Cats were unlucky when they lost to Manchester City last month in the final of the Capital One Cup. After Fabio Borini’s opener, it looked like Gus Poyet’s master plan had been executed to perfection, but two screamers from Yaya Toure and Samir Nasir, plus a late goal from Jesus Navas, meant it was City who went back to the North with the trophy.
The Wembley heartbreak would have been hard to take for Sunderland supporters and last weekend’s defeat to Hull was received in a similar manner.
However, the loss suffered at the KC Stadium was arguably the best thing for Sunderland right now.
Even if they were to have beaten the Tigers and then Sheffield United in the semi-final, another trip to Wembley for a domestic final would likely have been against Arsenal, who are expected to beat Wigan Athletic.
Aside from the fixture pile-up, Sunderland would have been huge underdogs in a final with Arsenal and another Wembley defeat could prove to be morally destructive for the whole club.
Premier League survival is more important for Gus Poyet’s side right and with crucial upcoming games against the likes of Crystal Palace, Norwich City and West Ham United in March alone, the Black Cats must be fully concentrated on maintaining their top flight status.
•This article was written by FTBpro’s Richard Bell
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