TONY MOWBRAY has explained his decision to leave Amad Diallo out of Sunderland’s starting side for last night’s goalless draw at Burnley.

Amad was on the bench for the opening 63 minutes at Turf Moor, but almost made an immediate impact within six minutes of being introduced for Joe Gelhardt as his deflected shot rebounded off the crossbar.

Ideally, Mowbray would have liked to name the Manchester United loanee in his starting side, but given that Amad only flew back into England from international duty with Ivory Coast late on Thursday, he did not feel he could risk him against the Championship leaders.

Mowbray said: “Amad arrived at the hotel at 7pm on Thursday night. He came straight from Manchester when his flight got in. He hasn’t trained with anybody all week, so we had no idea what his physical condition is.

“We would obviously want to start with Amad, but we couldn’t. It would have been the wrong thing to do.”

Mowbray also opted to leave Edouard Michut and Abdoullah Ba on the bench after the pair had played for France Under-20s in Spain during the international break.


Trai Hume was the only one of Sunderland’s internationals to start last night, with his lack of involvement with Northern Ireland the key factor behind his selection in the starting line-up.

Mowbray said: “Trai is the only player who was away with internationals who played, and that was because he hadn’t had any minutes for Northern Ireland. He came back and was pretty fresh.

“The other two lads who played two games in southern Spain (Michut and Ba), in the Marbella area, they played a lot of football, two-and-a-bit games.

“They’ve both been busy, so they sat on the bench, even though they came back on Thursday. The team picked itself really because none of those lads could play, they’d been away from the club all week.”