Keane hits out at 'victims'

Black Cats boss refuses to make excuses after defeat

Keane: Angry

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Sunderland boss Roy Keane accused his side of being 'victims' after their 1-0 defeat to Portsmouth on Saturday.

The visitors looked on course for a draw before Jermain Defoe scored from the penalty spot after 69 minutes to hand Pompey victory.

Phil Bardsley was adjudged to have tripped Niko Kranjcar after the Pompey midfielder had evaded one challenge in the area, but Keane insists his team only have themselves to blame.

"I've not seen it yet but it doesn't make too much of a difference what I think," he said.

Victims

"We just have to accept it and get on with it. I thought it was lazy defending from a couple of our players.

"Kranjcar is a clever player and you have to think quickly. We were the victims again today. Some of my players have been victims all their life.

"We've lost far too many away games this season. We can analyse and look at it but there are no excuses."

Keane believes his side were well placed to take at least a point at Portsmouth as they look to secure their Premier League survival.

He added: "Some games are going to be tougher than others. We felt that today was an opportunity and I think it was. We didn't do enough. We tried to keep a clean sheet for the point but it wasn't to be.

Overawed

"Time is running out in terms of away games but we have to keep believing and trying different players and different characters.

"Unfortunately a few of my players didn't turn up today. I felt today that we were overawed."

Sunderland slipped to15th place after the defeat and Keane concedes his side cannot afford to lose any more close matches.

"They're all big games for Sunderland," he added. "We can't have any off days. We have to be at it all the time. We could have played till midnight and David James would have had nothing to do.

"Our final passing lets us down. That's something I don't like to see."