Sunderland boss Gus Poyet: 'Ji Dong-won error won't affect team'

Sunderland manager Gus Poyet celebrates after the Barclays Premier League match between Newcastle United and Sunderland at St James' Park on February 1, 2014
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Sunderland head coach Gus Poyet insists that the debacle involving Ji Dong-won will not affect the team.

Sunderland manager Gus Poyet has insisted that his players will not be affected by the controversy surrounding the eligibility of striker Ji Dong-won.

The Black Cats were fined by the Premier League in December for playing Ji without international clearance.

The South Korean forward featured in four league fixtures and one Capital One Cup tie while ineligible.

"I don't think it will affect the team," Poyet said in Friday's press conference. "When too many things happen around a club, sooner or later it does affect the team, I believe that.

"This one in particular, I don't think it should affect us. It is nothing to do with how we are playing or the games we have got left.

"I know people think it shouldn't but it does. Now I don't think we have too many problems. But this has come as a surprise. People now maybe know why I couldn't play him. I knew, you didn't."

Sunderland, who have escaped a points deduction, have denied any wrongdoing on their part.

Sunderland's Ji Dong-Won in action against Fulham on August 17, 2013
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