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O'Neill: 'We won the game convincingly'

O'Neill: 'We won the game convincingly'

Martin O'Neill had every right to laud his side's victory last night as Sunderland cruised to a 3-0 victory over Reading.

The winless Royals started the night in 19th, a place and four points behind the Black Cats who had slipped into the relegation zone following Saturday's 3-1 defeat at the hands of Chelsea.

However, on the night the nerves were settled early on when James McClean crashed home a third minute opener, drilling low into the bottom corner on the turn.

Steven Fletcher doubled that lead just before the half-hour mark when he cleverley back-heeled Danny Rose's inch-perfect centre past Adam Federici.

With the Lads running out comfortable winners, Stephane Sessegnon outmuscled a Royals' defender before rounding Federici to finish coolly.

The win, Sunderland's first since beating Fulham in November, lifts the Black Cats up to 15th, three places and a point above the drop zone.

Speaking afterwards to safc.com, O'Neill acknowledged the impact of McClean's third-minute opener:

"It was great to score early," stated O'Neill.

"The early goal was very important because recently we`ve been chasing games and sometimes we`ve given ourselves mountains to climb.'

The Ulsterman then praised the performance of his fellow countryman and goalscorer, McClean: "I thought there were signs that James [McClean] is returning to the form we`ve seen from him before."

MON also singled out Sessegnon for special praise after his third goal of the season wrappd up proceedings:

"In terms of the scoreline Sessegnon`s goal made it a fantastic win.

"That goal will be a boost to his confidence. He also showed signs of returning to that form he has previously showed."

Sunderland head to Manchester United this Saturday.

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Writer:safc123
Date:Wednesday December 12 2012
Time: 10:12AM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Leicester City 36 22 11 3 77 30
2 Spurs 36 19 13 4 70 39
3 Arsenal 36 19 10 7 67 25
4 Man City 36 19 7 10 64 30
5 Man Utd 35 17 9 9 60 12
6 West Ham 35 15 14 6 59 17
7 Southampton 36 16 9 11 57 14
8 Liverpool 35 15 10 10 55 11
9 Chelsea 35 12 12 11 48 7
10 Stoke 36 13 9 14 48 -14
11 Everton 35 10 14 11 44 6
12 Watford 35 12 8 15 44 -6
13 Swansea 36 11 10 15 43 -13
14 WBA 36 10 11 15 41 -14
15 AFC Bournemouth 36 11 8 17 41 -20
16 Crystal Palace 36 10 9 17 39 -10
17 Newcastle 36 8 9 19 33 -25
18 Sunderland 35 7 11 17 32 -18
19 Norwich 35 8 7 20 31 -26
R Aston Villa 36 3 7 26 16 -45
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