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The boss was left upset by his side's distribution and is not sure how they can play well in one game then not turn up the next but blames himself for picking the right line-up

Sunderland manager Steve Bruce was disappointed with his side's passing in the 2-1 defeat by Norwich City, but was full of praise for his opponents.

Following a four goal win against Stoke City last week, Bruce had hoped his team had turned a corner but he feels like he is back to square one again.

And when asked by Sky Sports if he felt Sunderland deserved something from the game he said: "Maybe, we huffed and puffed but if I’m being seriously honest I thought we didn’t pass it as well as what we needed to.

"We gave the ball away so many times, so cheaply, which was one thing we have improved on – especially after the performance against Stoke – and today we had too many people today who gave the ball away cheaply," Bruce conceded.

"We made a rally towards the end, we needed to score a little bit earlier and it might have been different. But overall, I’m slightly disappointed with it.

"The timing [of the second goal] we’ve just switched off. We haven’t gone with runners, we haven’t done the basics, and the first one was exactly the same. We’ve let somebody play a one-two and get down the side of us and then switched off for that one minute and that’s what it takes.

"But fair play to Norwich and their crowd and all the rest of it. It was always going to be a difficult one, one where we needed to play well on the night and unfortunately we haven’t done that"

"The response was there, we managed to make a fist of it, and that was the good point of the evening. We never gave it up, we kept trying, but the level of performance from a lot of the players was below par and when you have that at this level it becomes a difficult night.

"We need to bounce back [against West Brom] and we need another performance. After last against Stoke the one thing you want to do is win again. Our away form has been decent, from last season to today, but sadly it wasn’t there today."

When asked if he took any part of the blame, Bruce replied: "Well, of course – I picked the team. We played very, very well ten days ago, and we’ve gone from there to here very quickly."

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