Sam Allardyce hails impact of 'super-sub' Duncan Watmore after Stoke win

Sunderland's Duncan Watmore
Sunderland's Duncan Watmore

Sunderland boss Sam Allardyce has hailed the impact of Duncan Watmore from the subs bench in the win over Stoke City.

Watmore, who recently penned a new four-year deal, came on after half an hour for the injured Jermain Defoe and helped inspire the 2-0 win, capping an impressive performance with the second goal.

Allardyce was delighted with Watmore's impact, playing up front alongside Steven Fletcher. And with Defoe a doubt for Arsenal with a hamstring injury, he could be set for an extended stay in the starting line-up.

The win lifted Sunderland out of the drop zone for the first time this season to cap a successful week of back-to-back wins and clean sheets.

Allardyce said: "Dunc scoring the winning goal, a new contract, a Masters degree- it doesn't get any better than that does it!

"We just have to make sure we keep his feet on the ground!

"He came on and what he has shown me, in the short time that I have been here, I had no hesitation for him to come on for Jermain.

"The impact of Duncan is one of the major factors of winning this game.

"He caused the central defenders so many problems in the first and second half.

"They had to result into fouling him, that got Ryan Shawcross sent off.

"We then had to find two pieces of quality to beat a resilient Stoke, Adam [Johnson's] and Patrick Van Aanholt's free-kick and then young Dunc's second."

Watmore terrorised the Stoke defence when he came on, Shawcross, in particular, struggled against his pace.

And his foul on Watmore two minutes after the re-start resulted in the Stoke man being handed his marching orders.

Allardyce agreed with the decision.

He added "I think the sending off was fair enough, they had committed so many fouls against him.

"They couldn't cope and when you persistently foul, particularly as a centre half, the referee will have no option but to brandish two yellows and a red.

"I thought the referee was correct in his decisions."