GARY ROWELL: Sunderland joy, Cardiff despair

Jack Colback celebrates his late leveller at Cardiff
Jack Colback celebrates his late leveller at Cardiff
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AFTER the 2-2 draw with Cardiff, both teams earned a point, but there was only team celebrating!

The fightback from two goals down and the equaliser in the last minute showed guts and character from the Sunderland players and must have been a huge blow to Cardiff.

Christmas has been good to Sunderland – four points from two difficult away games was probably more than even the most optimistic fan would have expected and stretches the unbeaten run to five games.

Colback’s goal, deep in injury time, didn’t just level the scores, it’s the sort of moment that can turn a season.

We’re still bottom of the league but now only two points separate Sunderland from fourth bottom and there is a host of clubs within reach.

At Cardiff, we didn’t have a kick in the first half-hour, as the home team dominated.

But we finished as the much stronger team and if you are going to draw a game of football, then a two-goal comeback is the way to do it.

Just like against Chelsea in the Capital One Cup, Gus Poyet’s substitutions proved vital, with both Colback an Fletcher coming off the bench to score. And this shows how important it is to have a strong bench.

It wasn’t the perfect performance by any means – Cardiff scored twice and could have had more.

But the dramatic and thrilling climax to the game will have a hugely positive effect on the dressing room.

At last, we seem to be getting some momentum to our season.

And the two Christmas fixtures will have brought much-needed confidence and morale to the fans.

THE ROWELL REPORT is in tonight’s Echo