Chris Coleman is planning to use the international break to Sunderland’s advantage, as the final run-in approaches.
The Black Cats are without a win in their last ten games, with the gap to safety now five points with eight Sky Bet Championship games remaining.
Following a two-week international break, Coleman’s men will travel to Derby County on Good Friday before returning to the Stadium of Light on Easter Monday to take on Sheffield Wednesday.
And after defeat to Preston North End, he explained why a break from domestic football offers an opportunity to regroup ahead of the run-in.
“It’s a bit of time to re-think things,” said the Sunderland boss.
“It takes a bit of pressure off everybody because we’ve not got a game coming round in three or five days – hopefully that’ll help us.”
He continued: “It gives us a breather from where we are and that will give us a little spring maybe.
“It also gives me a chance to step back from it and ask if I can come up with something to change it enough, and go down a different path to get different results.
“In the second week [of the international break], we’ll have to look at different formations and personnel to get away from the road we’re on at the minute.”