Sam Allardyce demands more from Black Cats

Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce

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Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce has urged his side to start turning their good performances into victories before it is too late this season.

The Black Cats, 1.50 to be relegated, conceded yet again on Saturday to pick up a 1-1 draw with Southampton at St Mary’s. Striker Jermain Defoe stepped off the bench to open the scoring in the 85th minute but Allardyce’s men failed to keep another clean sheet.

Centre-back Virgil van Dijk eventually pulled an equaliser back but Sunderland did crawl out of the relegation zone after picking up a point.

Allardyce’s side now have a two-week break before they face Newcastle in the Tyne-Wear derby and the former West Ham boss insists his team need to start getting over the finish line before they are relegated.

He told the Sunderland Echo: “We have to stop giving away points very quickly as we only have nine games left. We have only got 25 points from 29 games, that is not enough.

“I have been satisfied with the performances and pleased with the contribution of the new players and the rest of the team lifting their levels but it is not producing the wins we need to get out of trouble.

“We have thrown it away and put more pressure on ourselves. In the end I hope we can handle that pressure.

“It is not about what Newcastle or the others do, it is about us getting to 38 points as quickly as we can. I am pleased with performances but we have to turn them into victories and very quickly.”

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