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Page last updated at 16:54 GMT, Monday, 25 January 2010

Sunderland's Darren Bent needs support - Steve Bruce

Darren Bent
Bent's last six goals have all come in defeats or draws

Sunderland boss Steve Bruce says his side need to offer more support to striker Darren Bent, after his goal in the defeat by Portsmouth was in vain.

Bent scored his 15th goal of the season to open the scoring in the FA Cup tie but a Craig Gordon error proved costly as Pompey came back to win 2-1.

"We must start giving him a hand, he keeps scoring for us and we keep taking the lead," he told BBC Newcastle.

"We ought to be repairing that, so he's winning games, not just scoring."

He continued: "Individual errors, as a coach we can't do anything about. You can set up your team, like we have done, we've worked all week on the defensive part of the team.

"For long, long spells of it we were very decent, particularly first half, so the one thing we can't eradicate is individual error, and unless we concentrate better and defend better, we've got to improve."

Black Cats midfielder Lee Cattermole could return against Everton on Wednesday after sitting out an eight-game run without a league win.

"He's got a chance. We hope we can get Lee back, and we'll see how he is on Wednesday," Bruce said.



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