Sunderland boss on recent displays and the impact Middlesbrough equaliser could have

Chris Coleman hopes that Callum McManaman's late equaliser against Middlesbrough can help bring the Sunderland squad closer together.

Thursday, 1st March 2018, 5:00 pm
Sunderland manager Chris Coleman.

The Black Cats twice fought back from going behind to rescue a point, though the 1-1 draw between Hull and Barnsley on Tuesday night means the gap to safety is now five points.

Sunderland trained at the Stadium of Light on Thursday ahead of the crucial trip to Millwall, with Coleman and assistant Kit Symons helping staff to clear the pitch of snow.

The Sunderland boss has been encouraged by his team’s recent performances and thinks his side have the spirit to survive.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

He said: “You look at a team of players and proper team spirit is coming through the painful situations, hanging on in there when people have written you off.

“It is scoring in the last minute when everyone thinks it is over, when you have a man sent off and you have to dig in, that’s where it comes from.

“You can have a day out as a team or whatever and it is fun and I don’t have a problem with that, but the real, real proper team spirit comes from suffering together and digging in together, coming through it.

“It has been a bad run at a bad time for us, but bad runs come to an end, they do,” he added.

“I think the way they come to an end is when you start performing properly and in the last two games we have done that.

“So there’s not a lot I can say to the players at the end of that, we can be picky here and there and we are, with decision making and so forth, but in terms of their endeavour and input, there’s not much I can say.

“We just need a little bit more of that to get us away from where we are.”