Sbragia backing strikers

17 April 2009 08:21
Sunderland boss Ricky Sbragia is hoping his goal-shy strikers will rediscover their shooting boots in the battle against Premier League relegation.

Kenwyne Jones and Djibril Cisse have scored only five goals between them since December and their manager is well aware that statistic needs to change.

Jones scored his first goal in seven games when netting in last weekend's defeat to Manchester United, while Cisse has struck only once in the league in 2009.

And ahead Saturday's crucial home meeting with Hull City, Sbragia is eager to see a burst of goals as his 17th-placed side look to ease away from the drop zone.

"Kenwyne and Djib are important players to us. Last Saturday they played well together, showing what a threat they can be, but we need more days like that," Sbragia said.

"The goal will give Kenwyne a lot of confidence and Djib can feel part of that because the two of them were very good and did everything we asked of them.

Unlucky"We could do with Cisse getting a goal as well - he has been a bit unlucky on one or two occasions - but his time will come and we hope that comes against Hull.

"Like most strikers he thrives on goals and, the more you have, the more confidence you have about things. We won't take him out of the firing line."

Sunderland pushed league leaders United all the way in last weekend's 2-1 loss and Sbragia was delighted with the performance.

However, the Scot also knows that points are vital at this stage of the season and he is eager to add to a haul of 32 when Hull arrive.

"If you get a good result, or a performance like we did last week, then it's fantastic. This week has been enjoyable but we've got to deal with Saturday now," he added.

"You live and die by results and we need a good result against Hull."

Source: SKY_Sports