Poyet: I thrive on pressure

Poyet took the unusual step of addressing the club’s fans after they vented their anger following successive defeats to Queens Park Rangers and Bradford City.

Sunderland head into Saturday???s game against West Bromwich Albion at the Stadium of Light only two points outside of the relegation zone, but Poyet is embracing the pressure that comes with playing and managing at the highest level.

“I like pressure because it???s the way I have been brought up,” he said. “When you are in Uruguay and you play football for the national team the pressure is there to win.

???I have never played football or managed without pressure. I suppose it would be nice but maybe I would not be myself after because I don???t have pressure. It is part of the game. I like it, I really like it.???

Explaining why he released the open letter, Poyet said he wanted to ensure the clarity of his words were transmitted to Sunderland supporters.

???When things don???t go your way, it is better news than when things go right. I am part of that and I accept it but there is a limit and I think the best way to finish with all that was to make people read my own words, simply and directly,??? he said.

???There were too many things going around, you never know if it???s right or wrong and there is no better way than putting things clearly with your own words.

???That???s the best way to do it. It wasn???t me going behind anyone, it was me just doing the right thing through the right channels and making sure that everybody is pleased with it

Poyet was coy over his team selection ahead of Saturday???s game, although both Lee Cattermole and Jermain Defoe could be involved.

Defoe missed Sunderland???s FA Cup defeat to Bradford with a calf problem, and Poyet is aware that rushing the England striker back is a gamble.

He said: ???Last season???s Champions League final, Costa played 20 minutes. You would think if there???s a game in which you need a player like Costa on the pitch, it???s that game.

???Then when he comes off after 20 minutes, it???s very easy to say that he shouldn???t have played, but it???s too late.???