Jermain Defoe paid tribute to the character and spirit of the Sunderland squad after what he termed a ‘massive’ 2-1 victory over Bournemouth. Defoe netted from the penalty spot 16 minutes from full-time to give Sunderland a come-from-behind success, their first in the Premier League this season.
Dan Gosling have the hosts an early lead at the Vitality Stadium but Victor Anichebe levelled just after the half hour.
It looked as though Sunderland would be left waiting for their maiden victory of the season when Steven Pienaar received his marching orders for a second yellow card on the hour mark.
I think if you look at the game today the energy levels were unbelievable – exactly what the manager wanted.
Black Cats boss David Moyes was looking on from the stands as he served a one-game touchline ban but his players knuckled down despite an onslaught from the Cherries.
With just more than a quarter of an hour to play, Anichebe was upended by a challenge from Adam Smith inside the box giving Defoe the chance to convert from the penalty spot.
The veteran striker admitted it was vital for Sunderland to get a win under their belts. Defoe said they had carried out Moyes’ game plan well.
“It’s a massive win, obviously you can imagine. Week by week I feel like we’ve improved and it was just a case of luck [stopping us], to be honest,” he told Sky Sports.
“I think if you look at the game today the energy levels were unbelievable – exactly what the manager wanted. There’s a great team spirit, it’s been difficult but to show that sort of character when it’s been so hard is a credit to the boys.”
Sunderland are 1/1 to win their next game against Hull City on 19th November. Hull are 11/4 for the Stadium of Light clash while the draw is 12/5.