SAFC 10 YEARS AGO: Daryl Murphy’s terror vision

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Here’s what the Echo was reporting 10 years ago today.


Daryl: Fans scare rivals and help us up

SUPER sub Daryl Murphy wants the Stadium of Light crowd to terrify opponents.

His 90th-minute equaliser against Stoke City last night brought relief to Sunderland fans in a 31,358 crowd.

The Red and White Army were in decent voice as their promotion-chasing side twice came from behind to stretch their unbeaten run to 12 games.

But with a bigger crowd expected for Saturday’s visit of Hull – whose survival hopes were boosted by a 2-1 win at Luton – Murphy is looking foe the Wearside public to be their team’s 12th man.

The striker said: “Our fans did their bit last night and I think the attendance will be a bit bigger against Hull. It’s important that our fans make a big atmosphere.

“You saw at Barnsley last weekend that the fans we had behind us gave us a real boost.

“We need to make the Stadium of Light a fortress and, with the amount of supporters we get coming to the games, it can terrify visiting teams.”

Saviour Murphy was a 55th-minute replacement for Stern John against Stoke and claimed his first goal of 2007 to secure a 2-2 draw.

The Wearsiders remain third in the Championship, three points behind the top two of Birmingham and Derby. Blues went down 1-0 at Norwich last night and Derby could only draw 1-1 at home to relegation-haunted QPR.

Mick McCarthy’s Wolves saw their winning streak end with defeat at Coventry, while play-off hopefuls Southampton and Cardiff drew 2-2.

The only top 10 team to win last night was Preston at home to Ipswich, so results were not too unkind to Sunderland as they twice came from behind to remain unbeaten in the league in 2007.

Murphy said: “We saw that a couple of the other teams had lost games, so it is pretty much the same as it was and that’s good.

“Thankfully we got the goal at the end to keep the unbeaten run going. It was a vital goal.

“We would refer not to leave it so late, but it’s great to have got a point out of the game and the gaffer said it was a good second-half performance.

“There are going to be slip-ups towards the end of the season. Hopefully we’ll wait for the other teams to lose and get ourselves in there.

“I don’t know if the other teams are feeling the pressure, but I know that we aren’t.

“There’s a great belief in the squad and I think we show that in each game.”

Stoke gave as good as they got, absorbing Sunderland’s pressure and bitting back on the counter attack.

Darrel Russell gave the visitors a shock 22nd-minute lead as his hot brought a rare mistake out of home keeper Darren Ward.

Dean Whitehead struck back less than two minutes later, but Carl Hoefkens restored the visitors’ advantage in first-half added time and Mama Sidibe hit the post after the break before Murphy saved the day for Sunderland.

He said: “Daz Ward was disappointed, but these things happen. He’s been super all season and has saved us in a lot of games so you can’t fault him.

“It was one of those shots that unfortunately bounced into the ground in front of him and went in. There were things said at half time about what we were supposed to do and I think second half we came out and did quite well.

“We didn’t play as well as we can, but it’s a sign of a good team that you can get a result like that when you are playing badly.”


Boss insists he’s not disappointed as Stoke bag draw

SUNDERLAND’S seemingly irresistible progress up the Championship table was slowed last night.

But manager Roy Keane dismissed any suggestions that drawing the game with Stoke City would in any way be a disappointment to him.

Going into the match, there were those who expected victory at the Stadium of Light to be almost a formality, given the Black Cats’ form in 2007 and the Potters’ inconsistency.

But Keane knows there are no foregone conclusions in this division and a game against the most defensively effective side in the division was never going to be a stroll in the park.

“I thought it was a great result and I’m delighted with it,” he said, shrugging aside the suggestion that he might have felt before the match that his team would win.

“Let me tell you, at 2-1 down with five minutes to go, you would take anything.

“I’ve said before that there will be ups and downs before the season’s end and anyone who thought we were going to just walk in and beat Stoke is living in cloud cuckoo land.

“I think we will look back on this at the end of the season as being a very valuable point.

“There was a mixed bag of results on the night and what we take from it overall is that we’ve gained a point on Birmingham and we’re just three points behind the leaders.

“I’m interested in taking the positives out of this result and, from that point of view, it has been a good night.

“I just wish we could have equalised a touch earlier because when Murphy got the goal, there was only one team going to win it from there on in.”

Keane was the first to admit it was not a great display from a side which had won six and drawn one of its previous seven matches. But he was eager to applaud the never-say-die attitude of his team, even though they shot themselves in the foot twice with both Stoke goals.

He said: “We might have done better with the first goal, but these things happen and I was more disappointed with the second goal because coming on the stroke of half-time, it was always going to be very difficult for us in the second half.

“It was a bad second goal to give away, very sloppy and there were a few harsh words said at half-time.

“It’s fair to say we didn’t have a great second half either – we wanted to equalise early and couldn’t – but the lads were outstanding in terms of their attitude.

“They kept going right to the end and I can’t praise them enough for that.

“So I’m delighted with the great desire they showed to get a good result after giving two bad goals away. This could be a very good point for us – exactly the same as I felt when we drew at our place with Crystal Palace a while ago.

“The players are disappointed not to have won again, but you are not going to win every game you play in. Not even the best teams in the world can do that.

“The players were a bit down right after the match, but we will get that out of our system in training and prepare for Saturday.”