Sunderland smash Everton to secure Premier league survival for another year whilst Newcastle and Norwich are relegated.
Defender Lamine Kone struck twice from close range after Patrick van Aanholt scored with a 25-yard free-kick that was misjudged by keeper Joel Robles.
Victory capped an impressive revival by Sam Allardyce’s side, who have lost only two of their past 13 games.
Allardyce will be able to take his side to Watford on Sunday unburdened by the relegation fears that have surrounded the club since his appointment in October.
Big Sam will be able to take his side to Watford on Sunday unburdened by the relegation fears that have surrounded the club since his appointment in October.
Sam the savior
- Allardyce appointed after Dick Advocaat steps down. Advocaat stated the team didn’t have enough to stay in the league.
- The January transfer window came around and four signings were made. Wahbi Khazri, Jan Kirchoff and Lamine Kone have all been revelations and Allardyce must be praised for these signings. Dame N’doye hadn’t contributed as much as fans would have wished but he did score once at home.
- It’s not always been plain sailing, especially in the back end of 2015 when the Black cats were on a five-game losing streak. But since February the team has bee consistent in its setup, fight and intent on not losing.
Man of the match
Both Kone and Younes Kaboul were outstanding against Everton and Kaboul may have won the motm award without Kone getting his brace.
The pair have been rock solid in the heart of defence since Kone signed in January and have played a massive part in the Black Cats survival.
- Sunderland have extended their Premier League stay to 10 consecutive seasons, last playing outside the top flight in 2006-07.
- Sunderland were in the relegation zone for 237 days this season but have survived; Aston Villa will have been in the relegation zone 233 days by the end of the season.
- The Black Cats have scored four goals directly from free-kicks in the Premier League this season, joint highest with Chelsea and West Ham.
- This was the first time that two Sunderland defenders have scored in the same game since December 2013 (John O’Shea and Phil Bardsley v Chelsea).
- Sunderland have named the same starting XI for the last seven games, something they had never done before in the Premier League.
The table with one game to go
I plan on making a full breakdown of what our plans should be for next season in a blog post after Watford on Sunday but for now here’s a couple of points.
Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce admitted he had doubts about the club’s chances of survival following a 6-2 loss at Goodison Park in November and then a run of five defeats at the end of 2015.
“Recruitment is going to be absolutely massive this summer, finding the right players, finding really hungry players with a lot of quality,” said Allardyce.
I totally agree with what Sam says and this Summer is going to be massive to stop this club facing the annual relegation battle like it has done for the past three or four years.
First though it’s a trip to Watford on Sunday in the last game of the season!
Ha’way the lads!