Great night at the Britannia Stadium.....atmosphere and crowd reaction to the team's efforts brilliant....a goal down at halftime, but then a purple patch 10 minutes into the second half,with goals from Hendrie and Pericard, bringing the 3 points. Nail biting last 15 minutes or so as the team seemed to drop back deeper into defence, although that had a lot to do with concerted Sunderland pressure with particular danger and crosses coming in from the left.
Delap started the game - his first at home - brightly,but was injured in a collision with Sunderland's Elliot. It is upsetting and sad to see any player stretchered from the pitch.From the stands the injury looked serious,and if later rumours are to be believed he has a leg broken in two places.It can only be hoped that he makes a swift and full recovery.
The loan players who remained on the pitch -Hendrie, Griffin,and Diao- made a major contribution to the win : Hendrie with his excellent drilled shot plus all action approach, Diao with his calm unhurried economical (laid back?) style, and simple but effective passes. Probably best of all is that both of these players , plus Griffin have had the effect of bringing the best out of the players that we already have.Russell is a revelation...Sidibe seems so much sharper.
Definite grounds for increasing optimism.