Keeper Mignolet hails Sunderland defence

Sunderland's Wayne Bridge (right) in action against Norwich's Aaron Wilbraham.

Sunderland's Wayne Bridge (right) in action against Norwich's Aaron Wilbraham.

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SIMON Mignolet believes Sunderland’s backline has proved they can cope without their notable absentees.

Mignolet registered his 10th clean sheet of the season in last weekend’s victory over Everton’s neighbours Liverpool as Sunderland continued their impressive defensive form.

The former St Truiden stopper believes the confidence Sunderland have developed at the back has helped the likes of Jack Colback and Wayne Bridge – who replaced the suspended Lee Cattermole and injured Kieran Richardson last weekend – to maintain the resilience of Martin O’Neill’s side.

The 24-year-old added: “It sounds obvious, but it’s always easier to win a game when you get a clean sheet.

“You only need one goal to win the game.

“We’ve been very steady recently and we’ve got a lot of competition in the back four now when everyone is fit.

“That keeps everyone on their toes and has helped everyone to keep playing well. Hopefully we can keep doing that.

“Bridge came in and didn’t have much to do against Liverpool.

“He’s had a couple of games as a sub, but it’s different to starting a game and he did well against Liverpool. I think he’s probably enjoying it here.”