John O'Shea says Sunderland need to start demonstrating their survival instincts now if they are to end their terrible run.
The Black Cats find themselves at the foot of the table without a win after the first eight matches of the season following a demoralising defeat to fellow strugglers Stoke on Saturday.
Sunderland boss David Moyes admits the team are already in must-win territory when it comes to their remaining matches and O'Shea has echoed his manager's sentiments, claiming the situation needs to improve rapidly.
Having escaped the drop for the past four seasons with late surges, the Irish defender says the Black Cats have the know-how to escape their current predicament and wants them to rediscover the kind of form that has kept them up very soon.
"We don't want to keep drawing on those past experiences," O’Shea told the Echo. "Ultimately, we know what has got us out of those positions, grinding that clean sheet out away from home knowing you will create chances.
"We have to get back to that. At this stage, yeah, you do look [at the league table]. It is not as if you are one or two games into the league.
"The league table doesn’t lie. We have to do something about it quickly."