Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 30 September 2014

O'Neill wants more of same

Martin O'Neill

Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill will send his makeshift side into battle at Wigan on Tuesday night buoyed by their New Year's Day heroics.

The Black Cats survived a bout of illness and injuries and a second-half battering by Barclays Premier League leaders Manchester City to snatch a famous victory at the death, and O'Neill is hoping that will leave his battle-weary troops with a fresh spring in their step.

He said: "If we had been beaten having put that sort of effort in, then we would have been on a real downer. But we won and I am just delighted with that."

O'Neill, however, knows his players will have to work just as hard at the DW Stadium as they did on their own park against City if they are to have any chance of emerging with a similar result.

He was among the crowd at the Britannia Stadium on Saturday as the Latics took the lead and then having had defender Gary Caldwell dismissed, fought back from 2-1 down to snatch a point.

O'Neill said: "We are all scrapping at the moment and they showed that in abundance against Stoke City.

"I went to the game and they took the lead and then showed enough character to come back with 10 men to force the equaliser, so it will be hard for us.

"We maybe got three unexpected points on Sunday, and that will send us in in decent heart if nothing else."

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