Sunderland boss hails character and fight in 'miraculous' win over Chelsea

Jermain Defoe is fouled under pressure

Jermain Defoe is fouled under pressure

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Beaming Sam Allardyce hailed the character and fight shown by his Sunderland side in the 'miraculous' win over Chelsea.

The dramatic 3-2 win at a bouncing Stadium of Light means Sunderland need just two points from their remaining two matches to stay up thanks to their superior goal difference.

Sunderland fans celebrate

Sunderland fans celebrate

Chelsea took the lead through Diego Costa before Wahbi Khazri's stunning volley levelled the scores.

Matic scored deep into first half added-on time, a crushing blow for Sunderland but they recovered well.

A barnstorming second half saw Sunderland seal a pivotal three points thanks to Fabio Borini and Jermain Defoe's goals within the space of three minutes.

Allardyce: "To come back and win showed the fight and the desire and to take two blows and fight our way back, in the position we are in, showed great character.

"That got the fans on the edge of their seat and they roared us to a victory and helped us with their spport, that helps the players run harder and give that bit more.

"We needed that today and they have done everything right. It is a miraculous way to get a victory considering the circumstances and the pressure we were under.

"To go behind against a team the size of Chelsea is a difficult task at any stage but to come back when we are fighting relegation shows the great character.

"We had fantastic finishing too. The quality of goals, particularly the first one.

"And the contribution falls to Vito Mannone as much as it does abio Borini and Jermain Defoe as he made a couple of crucial saves at 2-1.

"That was a big part that he played in the victory."

Sunderland host Everton at home on Wednesday night knowing three points will seal the club's status as a Premier League side for a tenth straight year.

"Our destiny is in our own hands," added Allardyce.

"We turned it round with a big victory, Newcastle drawing and Norwich losing has put us in a very good position and we must take full advantage and look to finish it off on Wednesday.

"We'd be gutted [to lose it from here].

"We still have to be very professional, very driven to try and make sure when we finish that game we are safe and hopefully we will not jangle our nerves any longer than we need to.

"Me, the staff, the fans, everybody concerned. Their were so many people biting their nails today on the last few minutes.

"It was such a tense last few minutes because this was such a big result."