Martin O'Neill: We are in a 'little bit of trouble'

 


New Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill has called on his players to start winning matches soon so they can drag themselves away from the relegation zone.

O'Neill took over the manager's position at the Stadium of Light on Saturday before watching the Black Cats squander a 1-0 lead to lose 2-1 at Wolves.

The defeat stretched the Wearsiders' winless run to five matches and also saw them slip to 17th in the Barclays Premier League table, just one point from safety.

O'Neill took charge of his first training session at the club today and chose the media conference that followed to remind his players that they must start winning games fast if they are to move away from the drop zone.

He said: "Obviously we are in a little bit of trouble at the moment. We have been losing games and we could have had a few more points on the board.

"Sunday's game (against Blackburn) is very important for us. The players are aware of that and we just need to start winning some matches. The sooner we can do that the better."

O'Neill replaced Steve Bruce, who was sacked last Wednesday after the club made a poor start to their campaign following a summer spending spree that brought the likes of Connor Wickham, Craig Gardner and Nicklas Bendtner to the club.

Despite their recent poor form, O'Neill has been impressed with what he has seen from the players in the short time he has had with them.

"Among the players there is very good spirit," the 59-year-old said.

"We had a training session today. I would have expected them to be positive and they were just that."

O'Neill has been out of management since ending his four-year spell at Aston Villa last summer.

The Northern Irishman has been linked with a number of posts since then, but chose Sunderland, partly because it was a club he has held an affinity with since childhood.

"I don't really want to make too much of it, but I was a genuine supporter," O'Neill said.

"Where I was brought up there were two teams you could support - Celtic or Rangers, and everyone else had an English team as well.

"Other kids my age chose Leeds, Manchester United or Liverpool and I took Sunderland because Charlie Hurley was playing at centre-half, he was a big Irish centre-half.

"Like I said, I don't want to play too much on the boyhood hero thing as it will probably only give you a two-game grace. We are in the results business here. I want to make it a success if I can. I felt I was ready to come back. I am ready.

"It is a fantastic football club. The opportunity arose and I wanted to take it."

 

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee