Lee Johnson’s Sunderland were left frustrated on Saturday as they were held to a 3-3 draw with Wycombe Wanderers in League One.
They took the first lead in the game, with Dennis Cirkin delivering a beautiful cross into the box for Ross Stewart to attack and his effort came off the crossbar and in off goalkeeper David Stockdale, going down as an own goal.
Anis Mehmeti then equalised for Wycombe with a rasping effort from distance, before Sam Vokes nodded in from close range to put the home side in front.
Stewart may not be credited with the first strike but he most certainly claimed the second as he delightfully finished an Elliot Embleton cross with a deft touch at the near post. The towering Scot then made it 3-2 to Sunderland in the second half as he raced onto a through ball from Lynden Gooch before slotting it past the goalkeeper and into the far corner.
However, it was late heartbreak for the Black Cats as a scrappy Wycombe goal from a corner secured a point for the hosts in the 98th minute of the game.
One player who let Johnson down badly was full-back Carl Winchester as he struggled throughout the match against Gareth Ainsworth’s side.
Defensively, he was a lightweight. As per SofaScore, he lost 89% (8/9) of his duels throughout the match, including losing all five of his aerial battles. This suggests that he was physically dominated by the Wycombe players and did not step up to the challenge of the match, which resulted in him making one tackle, zero interceptions and zero blocks.
On the ball, he offered very little. As per SofaScore, he completed 0% of his dribbles, failed to create a single chance for his teammates and only completed 73% of his attempted passes – giving the ball away 11 times, once every 4.8 touches. This shows that he was unable to provide quality in possession to make up for his lapse defensive work.
Therefore, he let Johnson down badly as his performance left a lot to be desired at both ends of the pitch throughout the match. Hopefully, he will be able to shake himself down and improve his display next time out as this outing was nowhere near good enough from the Northern Ireland international.
The £3.4k-per-week dud has won 52% of his duels and averaged 3.1 tackles and interceptions combined per game in League One for Sunderland this season, which suggests that this was a one-off for Winchester. However, he needs to ensure that this is not the beginning of a dire run of form as performances like this could leave his place in the team up for debate.