David Moyes admits his Sunderland squad is in desperate need of reinforcements as he looks to a busy conclusion to the transfer window.
Moyes saw a squad depleted by departures and injuries succumb 2-1 to derby rivals Middlesbrough on Sunday, with debutant Papy Djilobodji and youngsters Adnan Januzaj, Lynden Gooch, Duncan Watmore, Donald Love and Paddy McNair thrown in at the deep end.
A first-half injury to skipper John O’Shea left him with just one fit central defender and with Lamine Kone’s future still uncertain, there is much work to be done before the transfer window closes.
Moyes told reporters: “What we have got, we are having to add to it with young players as well as one or two experienced players, and we have got to try to get the balance right and obviously choose and get the right players at the right price in the transfer market.
“That’s actually quite difficult. It’s easily said, but it’s not that easy and the prices, as you can imagine, are a bit more than they have been in the past.”
Back-to-back defeats to Manchester City and Boro have left the Black Cats without a point to their name, and Moyes was not shying away from the facts when it was put to him that fans may fear another relegation battle.
He said: “Well, they would probably be right because that’s where they’ve been every other year for the last four years, so why would it suddenly change? I think it will be, I don’t think you can hide the facts, that will be the case, yes.”