Sunderland have come under criticism this season for their lack of attacking intent, but manager Gus Poyet believes he is just implementing the strategy best suited to the options available to him.
Although the Uruguayan boss admits he would love to play with a swashbuckling style, he says he cannot because of the deficiencies that all his wide-men have.
“At the moment, our wingers have some ability and can do certain things, but they cannot defend or run the quantity they need to run," Poyet told the Northern Echo.
“One of the shapes West Ham like is with a diamond in the middle. Can you imagine us playing like that?"
Sunderland are expected to address this problem by bringing in a winger in January and it seems like that will be a big relief to Poyet.
The North East outfit have only managed to score 14 goals in their opening 16 Premier League matches and it has meant they have become the division's draw specialists.
Although the side do not concede many, their inability to turn one point into three because of a lack of ruthlessness up top means they are looking nervously over their shoulders.
At the moment Sunderland are clear of the drop zone, but unless they do manage to bring in Poyet's preferred attacking targets in January a relegation fight looks set to ensue.