Gary Rowell: Sunderland will need crowd help again to avoid Everton anti-climax

Jermain Defoe
Jermain Defoe

Sunderland’s great win over Chelsea leaves them with two games to save their season and as three points against Everton tomorrow night would be enough, nobody wants it to go down to the last day.

Just because Chelsea were beaten so impressively, doesn’t automatically mean we’ll just roll over the Toffees.

Football doesn’t work like that and as Sunderland fans, we’re experienced enough to know that we’re never too far away from another disappointment.

However, if the players show exactly the same attitude as last Saturday, they’ll be firm favourites to win and again I think the supporters will have a huge part to play.

Sunderland are never better than when the fans and players are working as one, and feeding off each other. With the reward of three points tomorrow being so high, there couldn’t be more incentive.

Everton have huge problems at the moment – their fans are unhappy, the players are out of form and manager Roberto Martinez is coming under severe pressure to keep his job.

But they’ve been better away from home this season and with players like Romelu Lukaku and Ross Barkley around, nothing must be taken for granted.

Sunderland need only to look at the reverse fixture at Goodison Park – a 6-2 thumping – to be aware of the Toffees’ threat, even if we are a much better and organised outfit than back in November.

I’m sure Sam Allardyce will send his players out with the instructions to win the game and put the season to bed, but he’s savvy enough to know that if it’s not working, make sure you don’t lose, as it will be much easier going to Watford requiring a draw than having to win.

Hopefully, that’s a scenario we won’t need.

Everything Sunderland did so well against Chelsea, they’re going to have to do all over again tomorrow night, and it won’t be easy after a game that must have taken a lot out of them.

But with the help of a brilliant crowd, the players will all be heroes if they can finally get the job done against Everton.