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Sunderland captain O'Shea: Cup final defeat won't affect relegation fight

Sunderland captain John O'Shea insists their Capital One Cup final defeat to Manchester City won't affect their relegation battle.

O'Shea, who will lead the Republic of Ireland in their home friendly against Serbia on Wednesday, knows Sunderland cannot allow their final defeat to Manchester City to linger, and damage the rest of their season.

He said: "A big defeat could have been damaging, possibly. It's one of those things where you play great and you lose, you play poorly and you lose; you've still lost a final.

"You might try to take crumbs of comfort but you can't really because you've still lost a final. We've got to dust ourselves down very quickly, and go again.

"You're fully aware of how many years it is since Sunderland were in a final so you know all about the expectation and the proud feeling that everyone had in reaching a final, but the main enjoyment you get in a final is when you win it.

"The occasion was great. The boys who haven't played in an occasion like this will have learned so much from it. We could be there again very soon but first and foremost it's the league and making sure we get back up the table."

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