7 May, 2013 - 09:46

Di Canio is happy with team’s performance against Stoke City

Di Canio is happy with team’s performance against Stoke City

Sunderland boss Paolo Di Canio revealed he is delighted with his team’s character, as they came from behind to hold Stoke to a 1-1 draw despite numerical disadvantage.

The Black Cats earned the point by courtesy of O’Shea’s goal in the 63rd minute, which cancelled out Walters’ early goal. Sunderland were down to 10 men when Gardner saw a red card for a terrible tackle on Adam. Di Canio praised his team’s spirit, stating: “I saw the team I wanted to see with shape and character. There was only one side in the second half, but we must stop the yellow and red cards. We had to keep the shape and use the wide areas better and move Stoke around. Also, with our desire and at home we tried to stay in the game and create chances and in the end the desire and effort helped and the point will be crucial to us.”

The draw allowed the Black Cats moving three points above the relegation zone and come level on points with Newcastle and Norwich, with Sunderland outstripping them on superior goal difference.

Di Canio admitted home game with Southampton on Sunday will be like “Champions League final” for them. He said: “The game at home to Southampton is now like a Champions League final. It’s crucial for our destiny. We can stay up but we need to win another game.”

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Author: Basil Naumov

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