JUST over a week ago, it was expected to be a match that could decide promotion. Now, after Sunderland’s dreadful eight days, Max Power knows all the Black Cats can do when they visit the KCOM Stadium tomorrow is spoil Hull’s party.

While the Black Cats have lost their last three matches, the Tigers are unbeaten in 11, and victory tomorrow would secure their promotion back to the Championship.

Power is in no mood to watch Hull celebrate, but the priority is to quickly turn around Sunderland's worrying slump.

“It’s a case of believing in what we do and not coming away from what we do well,” he said. “Can we tidy up again and get back to keeping clean sheets?

“It wasn’t through lack of trying or lack of endeavour that we lost at the weekend, but it was disappointing. Now, we have to turn that frame of mind around and get a result at Hull.

“They’ll be thinking they’re nearly over the line and I certainly don’t want us to give them that boost. We want to make it as hard as possible for them and the way we can do that is by going there to try to get a result.”

Having ended the Wembley hoodoo last month with victory in the Papa John's Trophy final over Tranmere and put together an impressive 12-match unbeaten run in the league, there was a growing feeling that Sunderland were heading for automatic promotion. That has been shattered, but Power doesn’t want the hard work over the winter months to go to waste.

“We’ve not become a bad side overnight, so it’s a case of getting ready to go again,” he said. “Can we re-find the form we had two weeks ago when we were churning out results for fun? If we end up in the play-off route, we need to head into that in a good frame of mind.

“We’ve won at Wembley once this season and I’m confident in the lads."