Sunderland's confidence shot after home FA Cup humbling, ex-Pompey manager slams side after Ipswich Town labour against League Two strugglers and Charlton Athletic boss relieved against Hawks

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Sunderland boss Lee Johnson admitted his side’s confidence has been rocked after their home FA Cup humbling by League Two strugglers Mansfield.

The Stags defeat continues a run of five games without a win for the Black Cats, with four defeats arriving along the way.

That’s after they set an impressive pace, winning nine of their first 12 league games to put themselves in early promotion contention.

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Johnson knows their season hitting a new low with the Mansfield loss is impacting self belief.

He told the Sunderland Echo: ‘I've just been talking about media, social media, and how that can have an impact. It's a really big part of society now and you've got be able to manage it.

‘I think as a manager, 15, 20 years ago I think it was easier to raise confidence levels.

‘It's clear right now that we are lacking confidence.

‘If you rewind seven, eight games ago, we were playing compact and popping the ball around, the players were flowing over the ground.

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Lee Johnson.Lee Johnson.
Lee Johnson.

‘The first half, I thought that was a poor attitude and we were low on confidence.

‘What you can't do at a club like this is hide.

‘I've got a really big job in terms of maintaining those confidence levels, and that's probably the most challenging thing in football for a manager today.’

Elsewhere, Accrington boss John Coleman felt his side could’ve won - after taking a 5-1 battering at the hands of League Two high fliers Port Vale.

He told the Accy official site: ‘We could have easily won that game today, playing no different. That is football. People will just pick the paper up or look at the TV or the internet – they don’t really have papers any more do they? – people look at the internet and see 5-1 - “oh, Accrington have been thumped” .

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‘Their fans were very derogatory about us towards the end. We will see if we play them next year if they are saying the same thing. They would be lucky to play us next year so let’s see.’

Charlton caretaker boss Johnnie Jackson was a relieved man as his side eventually broke Hawks’ resistance.

The Addicks picked up a 4-0 success at The Valley, but had to wait until the 72nd minute to make the breakthrough.

Jackson told London News Online: ‘I don’t mind admitting that I was a little bit relieved when that first one went in.

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‘You’re quite confident after that, that we’d go on and get a second and a third and maybe more. The longer it goes on and they have a couple of set-piece situations, you’re thinking we need to get one here. At 0-0 or even 1-0 they’re only one chance away from putting you under real pressure. It was important that we got that first but after that it was pretty comfortable. But it was a long time waiting.’

Former Pompey boss Paul Cook was at a loss to explain his side’s display as they were held at home 1-1 to an Oldham side out of the League Two drop zone on goal difference.

When he was asked what he thought about his side’s display, he told the East Anglian Daily Times: ‘Probably the same as you. I think you've already written your paper and your scripts.

‘We picked the same team that, four nights ago (against Wycombe), left the field to a standing ovation from an ecstatic support. I've watched the same players today play like that.’