Defoe confident of Sunderland survival

Jermaine Defoe is adamant Sunderland have a squad capable of avoiding the drop despite their late slip up in their 1-1 draw against Southampton this weekend.

The former Tottenham Hotspur striker struck in 85th minute after being sent on by Sam Allardyce in the second half, but the Black Cats dropped two points when they conceded deep into stoppage time, with Virgil van Dijk scoring the equaliser for the Saints.

“I think we’ll be fine. I believe from now until the end of the season we will win a few games, because of the way we’re playing, and the players we’ve got,” the veteran forward said after the game.

“The new signings – Wahbi Khazri, Lamine Kone, all of them, and even the lads that came in during the summer like Younes Kaboul – have lifted us. Emmanuel Eboue looks like he’s going to sign too, so it’s a top squad on paper.

“But there’s no point just saying we’ve got good players, you have to go out and perform. The rewards are so big that the lads should enjoy that pressure, if they can, and make sure we kick on and try and win games,” he added.

“I think we just need to continue doing what we’re doing. And it’s important we stay positive, which we will do.

“We just have to make sure that, when that whistle goes on the last game of the season, we’re looking forward to coming back to play in the Premier League.”

With nine games remaining until the end of the campaign Sunderland are currently in 17th place, one point above the relegation zone with 35 points.