Poyet says Mannone big influence on Sunderland resurgence

Sunderland boss Gus Poyet has hailed the impact of Vito Mannone in recent games.

Sunderland boss Gus Poyet has hailed the impact of Vito Mannone in recent games.

A summer buy from Arsenal, Mannone has become a firm favourite with the fans since taking over the gloves from the injured Keiren Westwood in November.

Poyet said; “Vito is a great story – one of the stories of the season.

“He came here, didn’t think he would play, thought that Westie [Westwood] would be the number one.

“Then there was a change of manager and Westie’s got injured against Hull in November.

“The only decision I had to make was in the next league game against Man City, when Westie was fit to play, even though he wasn’t quite 100%.

“But Vito had played well in the second half against Hull and against Southampton in the cup.

“In a different situation, maybe Westie would have played against Man City, but I decided to stick with Vito and he has never looked back.

“He is one of the success stories of the season.”

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