The hosts recorded just two shots on target and rarely threatened to claim maximum points from the uneventful Stadium of Light clash.
The Black Cats boss said: "It was really disappointing. We didn't create enough, we didn't exert enough pressure and we allowed them to dictate the pattern of the game.
"We're the home side and should do better. They came here with confidence after reaching the Capital One Cup final. That said, we won the last couple of games and played well last time we were here. We should do better, we should create more."