Sam Allardyce expecting drop in form from Sunderland stars

Allardyce deflated

The manager is expecting players who are accustomed to a winter break to struggle.

Sam Allardyce is expecting several Sunderland stars’ performances to drop over the busy Christmas period as reported by the Shields Gazette.

The Black Cats have picked up their performances since Allardyce took charge back in October, but still find themselves in the bottom three.

They are currently two points away from Swansea in 17th place, with the busy Christmas period sure to be key to their survival hopes.

They take on Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool in that period, with relegation rivals Aston Villa then coming to the Stadium of Light on 2 January.

With several of his stars more accustomed to a winter break on the continent though, Allardyce has warned fans that a dip in performance levels could be forthcoming.

“The ones who haven’t been here before are the ones who are still learning - the Ola’s, [Toivonen] the Yann’s [M’Vila],” Allardyce told the Shields Gazette.

“They could have a dip over Christmas because they haven’t played like this before. So we have to use the squad as best we can.”

With such a tough set of fixtures upcoming, Allardyce’s men will not be expecting to pick up many points over the festive period.

Newcastle United and Bournemouth have picked up big points over recent weeks to help them start to move away from the bottom three.

Both have more favourable fixtures coming up than Sunderland, and Black Cats fans will be hoping they are not too far away come the end of December.

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