SEB LARSSON is sure Sunderland can convert promise into points as the Black Cats prepare to lock horns with their fellow strugglers.
Sunderland’s four games prior to the international break were far more encouraging from Steve Bruce’s new-look side, yet the Wearsiders still find themselves lingering down in 15th spot in the Premier League table.
But that will change if Bruce’s men can maximise their return from a run of inviting fixtures against sides also at the wrong end of the table – Fulham, Wigan, Wolves and Blackburn.
Prior to tomorrow night’s clash with England at Wembley, Swedish midfielder Larsson believes Sunderland’s influx of summer signings have found their feet and can re-establish themselves in the top half.
Larsson, who will miss Saturday’s clash with Fulham through suspension, told the Echo: “The four games after the international break are definitely the types where we’ve got to look to pick up some points.
“But we’ve started to look a lot better throughout the 90 minutes.
“Looking at the next fixtures, we should be picking up points and I think we will.
“Without doubt, there’s been progress over the last three or four games.
“You can definitely see we’re playing a lot more as a unit and working well together.
“We always knew our last game at Man United was going to be a tough one, but we had the belief that we could get something out of it.
“On another day, we could have got a point after conceding an own goal and not getting a penalty decision, so it’s looking more and more positive.”
Larsson faces England for the first time tomorrow in the second of two competitive friendlies for Sweden.
The 26-year-old was on the losing side on Friday night as Sweden lost 1-0 to Scandinavian neighbours Denmark, and must face an England outfit, buoyant after Saturday’s victory over World Champions Spain.
But Larsson insists it is beneficial for Sweden to be testing themselves in the run-up to next summer’s European Championships after earning qualification last month.
“It’s two nice games, obviously I would have liked to have gone into the international break with a point or more from Man United, which with a bit of luck we would have had,” added the former Birmingham man.
“Both of them are very big games for us.
“Denmark away is always a big one with the rivalry between the two countries, but then facing England is always a test you enjoy.
“These are exactly the type of friendly games you want.
“You don’t want typical friendlies, you’d rather it was more competitive against good opposition which is more like what we’ll face in the Euros.”