sport

Cattermole targets 12th place

Sunderland midfielder Lee Cattermole has set his sights on finishing 12th in the Premier League even though he believes it would flatter the club.

The Black Cats secured their top-flight status with a game to spare and leapt to 14th place when they defeated West Brom 2-0 at the Stadium of Light on Wednesday evening.

But should they follow that up with a final day victory over Swansea and West Ham fail to beat title favourites Manchester City, Gus Poyet's men will end the season in 12th.

However, while Cattermole would happily take that, he is not so sure it would be a fair reflection of their campaign.

The 26-year-old said: "I think finishing 12th would be a bit of a false position, really.

"From where we have been, I wouldn't say 12th is where we should be finishing.

"We need to be realistic and realise how close we have come to relegation and what we have done to be in the position we are in.

"I would have taken a point from the last two games and finished 17th."

Sunderland are where they are because of a remarkable run which has seen them win their last four games and take 13 points from a possible 15 just when they needed them most.

The Stadium of Light will be packed once again on Sunday to acclaim that monumental effort, but Cattermole knows there is work to be done during the summer.

He said: "We have got to look to improve and start next season how we have finished this season.

"It's nice when things are going well because people look for all the good points.

"But there have been a lot of bad times when things haven't gone well and we have played well in games, but haven't got that goal.

"I remember Crystal Palace, Norwich and Aston Villa at home when we dominated, but couldn't get in front.

"We haven't had a player who has scored 15 or 20 goals, and that makes such a big difference.

"Connor Wickham has been great, but we need that from the start of the season. That's one thing we have lacked all season."