While most of the news surrounding the Cardiff City–Sunderland match centered around Cardiff owner Vincent Tan firing manager Malky Mackay, both teams played a thrilling match. In the end, Sunderland came from two goals down and secured a big road point in the waning moments.
After sitting in the bottom of the EPL table on Christmas day, Sunderland had a successful week. They dealt Everton their first season loss on Boxing Day before tying Cardiff 2-2 Saturday. As a result, Sunderland still sits in the cellar, but is closer to other teams in danger of relegation. The gap between Sunderland and 13th-place Aston Villa is only six points.
As we head into 2014, the tight table at the top and the bottom of the table will cause for tense soccer. At this moment, a match’s result could be the difference from being relegated and being saved. For Sunderland, they need to keep up their recent success or else they will not be staying put in the standings and in danger of relegation.
Saturday’s win should be a confidence booster for the team. After being pressured earlier on by Cardiff, Sunderland had their own spell of possession and pressure as the first half ended. As the second half was winding down, Sunderland dug deep and found a way to score two goals. This tie against Cardiff is worth more than just one point. It is a confidence booster for a squad struggling to find points and goals this season.
This confidence booster comes at a good time. On New Years Day, Sunderland takes on Aston Villa. If they can pull out three points, they could potentially lift themselves out of the relegation cellar.
Nonetheless, Sunderland’s effort and not giving up paid off today.
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