Quinn - We'll learn from slump
Chairman accepts injuries and Bent sale have hit Black Cats hard
Last Updated: April 23, 2011 2:08pm
Quinn: Sunderland chairman keen to assess the reasons behind the club's injury list
Chairman Niall Quinn insists Sunderland will learn from the factors that have led to the team's alarming slide towards the Premier League drop zone.
A run of eight defeats from nine games has seen the Black Cats slide from sixth place in late January to 14th, five points above the drop zone with five games left.
In his programme notes for Saturday's home game with Wigan, Quinn acknowledged the mid-season sale of top scorer Darren Bent to Aston Villa has hit the Black Cats hard.
But manager Steve Bruce has also pointed to a lengthy injury list and Quinn is so concerned by the spate of injuries that he confirmed the club are analysing what caused them.
"Part of the bigger picture is that we need to address why we have so many injuries compared to other clubs," Quinn wrote.
"We all know that injuries are part of football and that any player can get injured at any time.
"We have to examine whether the number of injuries that have hampered us are down to sheer misfortune or is there something we can do to reduce the number of injuries that beset us?"
Niall Quinn Quotes of the week
"But we have to examine whether the number of injuries that have hampered us are down to sheer misfortune or is there something we can do to reduce the number of injuries that beset us?"
Sunderland felt Villa's offer for Bent was too good to turn down but Quinn admits that, in hindsight, the Black Cats had not anticipated potential injuries up front.
The controversial decision to sell Bent has therefore left them short for attacking options.
"We also take responsibility for the departure of Darren Bent and how we thought that would affect the team," Quinn added.
"Just five days after his transfer, we learned that we would be without Danny Welbeck for eight weeks and learning from that, we have to look at giving the manager every chance of improving us and taking us further by giving him a stronger hand.
"In congratulating Stoke City on reaching the cup final, we observe that while they are close to us in the Barclays Premier League, they have six forwards available.
"We will consider whether that is the way to go for us rather than risk being threadbare in the striking department - or any other - if a series of injuries to players in that position occurs."