Sunderland manager Chris Coleman has rued a "hugely disappointing day" after his side suffered a 2-0 defeat at home to Preston North End.
Another poor performance from the Black Cats saw them reduced to 10 men when Jake Clarke-Salter received his marching orders in between goals from Sean Maguire and Callum Robinson for the playoff-chasing visitors.
The result left Coleman's side rock bottom of the Championship table and some five points from safety with just eight games of the campaign remaining.
"We are left disappointed again here," Coleman told reporters after the game. "The first half was tight; the conditions were very difficult but in the second half it took just five minutes for us to concede a goal like we did.
"It's painful and it's a common theme, hence why we are bottom of the table. A game of football is over 90 minutes. A 45-minute performance is never enough.
"There was nothing in the match in the first half, but you can't defend set-pieces like we did. Jake Clarke-Salter got sent off which is another body blow and then we are facing a huge uphill task. It's a hugely disappointing day again."
Next up for Sunderland is a tough trip to fifth-placed Derby County on Good Friday.