Victor Anichebe says Sunderland are not taking on board David Moyes’ instructions and has labelled them “too naive” in their battle against relegation.
In a candid interview in the Sunderland Echo, Anichebe, who has just returned from injury was critical of the Black Cats’ squad, who face an almost impossible task of preserving their Premier League status.
Sunday’s defeat by Manchester United leaves Moyes’ men rock bottom of the Premier League and 10 points adrift of safety with just 21 points left to play for.
“I always speak honestly, I think we have a bit of naivety in our play sometimes,” said the 28-year-old, who started his first game since New Year’s Eve, in Sunday’s 3-0 defeat to Manchester United.
““We go a goal down and instead of staying tight in our play, really concentrating – that’s the thing the manager is trying to address to the players – you go a goal down, it doesn’t matter, that happens to every team in the Premier League, you need to give yourselves a foundation to come back.
“But when you go a goal down and then concede again, it makes it very difficult for the rest of the team. It makes it so difficult.
“That’s the main thing, the naivety sometimes. Sometimes we chase the game and think we need to get the goal straight away – we don’t.
“Look at the game Tottenham played against Swansea, they went down and scored three at the end of the game.
“Speaking back to when we were at Everton, keeping clean sheets, these are things we need to do as a team.
“And it’s not the defence, people might say that, it’s not, you keep clean sheets as a team not as individuals. “Maybe we could have dropped back a bit more. It’s the whole team.
“Those are the foundations we need. You can feel the nervousness when we concede and sometimes we play to that, attack, attack, and then they break on us.
“We have a youngish team, so I think those are things we need to knock out of our game. The manager tells us every week to stay in the game.
“But going 2-0 down gives you a mountain to climb, especially against a team like Manchester United.”
“I’m feeling downbeat obviously, it’s not a good result,” added Anichebe, who has been missing with a knee injury.