Sunderland boss O'Neill warns long way to go after breakthrough win
O'Neill, who received the tacit support of owner and chairman Ellis Short before kick-off, was delighted to have collected the three points, but warned it was only a start.
He said: "I just feel that this season will be really tough for us, I accept that. I kind of thought that anyway at the start of the year.
"I didn't want people starting to get carried away with it. From my own viewpoint, I just want to try with all my might to put a team together here that not only can we compete, but that a team that people would look forward to seeing play.
"But that's sometimes easier said than done."