The Sunderland supporters turned on their owner Ellis Short for the first time, in the 58th minute of their clash with Norwich.
Six years after taking full control of the club from the Drumaville Group, the American billionaire faced chanting from the stands.
“Are you watching Ellis Short?” tumbled down from the stands, and into the ears of players who are simply not good enough.
It was 3-0 by then. Sunderland manager Dick Advocaat afterwards bore the perplexed look that has worked its way onto the faces of all his predecessors.
“Even this side must be good enough to get a better result against Norwich,” he said. “There is something wrong, it is quite simple. Tomorrow we will have a meeting and they will talk and I will talk.
“I don’t want to mention names, it was the whole team, there is the exception of one or two players. They do things I don’t expect at this level. I have to know why this can happen. It is really strange for me.
“You can play bad and bad but not knowing what to do is even worse. We have to find an answer as quick as possible.”
His side had three new players, but it was the same old Sunderland; moribund, slow and fragile.
Russell Martin directed a parried shot past Costel Pantilimon in the 26th minute, Steven Whittaker added a fine second before the half finished, and then came another Norwich goal, from the excellent Nathan Redmond.
Those supporters that did not leave the ground at that point made their feelings clear.
Duncan Watmore then scored a late consolation on his debut.
It was a different emotion for the Norwich manager Alex Neil. “We scored some fantastic goals,” he said. “We showed quality and thoroughly deserved the win.”
Sunderland: (4-3-3) Pantilimon; Jones, Coates, Kaboul, Van Aanholt; Larsson (Graham, 46), Cattermole, M’Vila; Defoe, Fletcher (Watmore, 70), Lens.
Norwich: (4-1-4-1) Ruddy; Whittaker, Martin, Bassong, Brady; Tettey; Redmond (O’Neill, 82), Hoolahan (Johnson, 62), Dorrans, Howson; Jerome (Grabban, 68).
Referee: Kevin Friend
Man of the match: Redmond (Norwich)
Match rating: 5/10Reuse content