English Premiership

Advocaat describes 'unbelievable feeling'

2015-05-21 08:05
Dick Advocaat (AFP)

London - A tearful Dick Advocaat saluted Sunderland's latest escape from the jaws of Premier League relegation as an "unbelievable feeling", having secured the point that kept them up in a 0-0 draw at Arsenal on Wednesday.

Dutchman Advocaat was parachuted into Sunderland's managerial hotseat in March following the sacking of Gus Poyet and set about rebuilding their battered confidence and helping them ease away from danger.

Three wins and three draws in his eight games so far in charge have helped Sunderland move up to 38 points, four clear of Hull City in the final relegation place with one game of the campaign remaining.

Former Netherlands boss Advocaat said instilling belief in his players had been the secret of his success.

"It is an unbelievable feeling, we did it by ourselves," he told Sky Sports.

"The players gave everything to stay up. It is a beautiful stadium, facilities are great, but in the last couple of years, they have not always been lucky with things...

"The most important thing is that the players started believing that they could do something.

"I always tell the players, you are not here because you are a nice guy you are here because you are a good player.

"If you keep saying that and give them the confidence they need, even against better teams, you can get a result."

Advocaat was appointed until the end of the campaign at a club who last season had also left it until the penultimate match to secure their safety.

He was giving little away about whether he would be tempted to remain in the job.

"I will give an answer next week on my future," he said.

He dropped strong hints last week about staying on but had previously joked about how his wife would not countenance an extended spell on Wearside.

His players, however, will no doubt be willing him to remain at the helm.

"The manager has been brilliant," Sunderland captain John O'Shea said while adding that Sunderland feared going into a final day decider.

"I saw a Sky advert for survival Sunday and Sunderland featured on it and I thought 'oh my God we have to get away from that'."


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