Sunderland 1 Newcastle 1: Pardew looks for positives after draw
Sunderland 1 Newcastle 1: Alan Pardew refuses to be downbeat despite seeing his side get pegged back by Black Cats late on
Alan Pardew refused to beat downbeat after watching his Newcastle United side come to within four minutes of victory before being pegged back by Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.
The Magpies, who took a third-minute lead through Yohan Cabaye, were forced to play 65 minutes with 10 men after Cheick Tiote was shown a straight red card for a reckless tackle on Steven Fletcher.
And despite Sunderland grabbing an equaliser courtesy of a Demba Ba own goal in the 86th minute, Pardew chose to reflect on the positives after the game.
“It was a magnificent effort,” Pardew, whose side are in 11th place on 10 points, told BBC Sport. “It was important to our fans and we showed how important it is to us. An hour with 10 men, we couldn’t hold on to the lead, if we did it would have been one of the greatest victories here ever.
“We were the better team before the sending off. At first, I didn’t think it was that bad, but looking at it again, I can’t have too many complaints.”
Meanwhile, Sunderland boss Martin O’Neill hailed his side’s determination but accepted that the sending off swung the game in the Black Cats’ favour following a bright start from the visitors.
“We were knocked back by early goal which gives them a lift,” O’Neill said. “They were very strong until the sending off. I thought we became anxious when they were down to 10 men. In second half, it was the sheer weight of pressure that led to the goal.
“Newcastle played well with the 10 men. I must admit, slog or not, the noise that erupted from the stadium when we equalised is something that I will not forget.”