David Moyes explains Didier Ndong's absence from Sunderland stalemate with Burnley

Sunderland manager David Moyes

Sunderland's survival hopes remain in the balance as they drew 0-0 with Burnley at the Stadium of Light.

Sunderland's Didier Ndong in action with Manchester City's Yaya ToureSunderland's Didier Ndong in action with Manchester City's Yaya Toure

David Moyes has explained why he decided to leave Didier Ndong out of Sunderland's side for their clash with Burnley on Saturday, the Sunderland Echo reports.

The Black Cats missed the chance to really close the gap to those just above the drop zone in the Premier League, as they failed to break down the Clarets and had to settle for a goalless draw.

One of the decisions that led to some confusion amongst the Sunderland fans was Moyes' call to leave Ndong on the bench and instead start with Darron Gibson and Jack Rodwell in the middle of the park. But the boss explained that he wanted to pick a more dogged midfield to combat their opponent's strength.

“I decided I wanted Jack and Gibbo together. I thought the game might suit more Britishness in the middle of the pitch," he said, as reported by the Sunderland Echo.

“I just felt I would go with that in the middle and the two boys up front.”

Sunderland manager David MoyesSunderland manager David Moyes

While the decision appeared to pay off somewhat - as the side avoided defeat - some fans may be urging Moyes to start taking some gambles before it is too late.

Ndong has arguably been one of Sunderland's best performing midfielders this season, and having him in the team may have cost the team a bit of tenacity, but it would have also ensured that there was slightly more creativity.

And with the Black Cats' situation looking bleak, utilising that creativity could perhaps give them a glimmer of hope when it comes to pulling off yet another great escape. 

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