Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe insists that survival in the Premier League this season will come down to “mental strength”.
SunderlandÂ’s fate now lies in their own hands and victory over Everton on Wednesday would guarantee them Premier League football next season with one game to spare.
Defoe, who has netted 15 times this term, bagged the winner in a dramatic 3-2 triumph over Chelsea on Saturday and believes they are almost there.
However, the former Tottenham man insists that it will come down to being strong mentality and has urged the squad to treat their final two games like any others.
“The fans won us the game,” he said. “Even when you are fatigued and tired – it has been a long season mentally as well – when the fans roar like that, you find something. You find an energy. We knew it was a massive game but to win like that is unbelievable.
“But itÂ’s just about mentally being strong. You can forget about the tactics and formations. It is mentally being strong.
“It is between there (points to ears) That is the difference. Mental strength. Being positive. Sticking together. Don’t let the pressure get to you. Don’t let the occasion get to you. Look at it like another game where we need to get three points.
“When it is all done you take it all in and embrace what you have done. The key thing now is being strong mentally and just trying to get that last win.”