Bolton Boss Wants Sunderland's Standing

Last updated : 14 January 2013 By Tott Dixon - Seaham

Dougie Freedman: “To play these games against Premier League teams just reminds the lads what we’re missing.


“It’s always good – I feel it just shows them we’re jealous of where they (the opposition) are and want to get back up there as soon as possible.

"It’s a little reminder of what we’re missing out on.

“It’ll be tough but, listen, football’s tough.

“If you’ve not got thick skin then you might as well step out of this game.”

Martin O'Neill vows to treat FA Cup seriously on Sunderland's 40th anniversary.

O’Neill insists that he owes it to Wearside ­supporters to send out a powerful side in Tuesday’s third round replay against Bolton as the club try to emulate the deeds of Wembley heroes such as Jim Montgomery and Ian Porterfield.


The Black Cats boss chose not to ring the changes for the 2-2 draw at the Reebok and named his strongest side as Sunderland’s 2013 FA Cup quest began.

Martin O’Neill: “When I heard that we were taking 5,000 fans down to Bolton, I don’t think it would have gone down well if I had fielded a weakened side or included a couple of very young lads.

“The competition is so important to us and we want to try and stay in it.

“Also, while it’s not the main reason by any stretch of the imagination, it is 40 years since the club had that magnificent cup run and lifted the trophy, so we have to pay that some respect.

“The busy Christmas period has taken its toll even on those clubs that carry big squads.

“But even if I had had more players, I wouldn’t have done it because this is the FA Cup and it is an important competition.”

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