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O'Neill: Bardsley's fit now

Martin O'Neill believes full-back Phil Bardsley can play a role in Sunderland's battle to secure their Premier League status this season.

Last Updated: 23/03/13 at 12:30 Post Comment

Phil Bardsley: Difficult season for the Sunderland full-back

Phil Bardsley: Difficult season for the Sunderland full-back

An injury-hit campaign has restricted Bardsley to just six starts in the Premier League and he has made only one appearance for the Black Cats in the past two months.

O'Neill acknowledged it has been a difficult season for the 27-year-old, but feels Bardsley is now in a position to contribute to Sunderland's survival fight.

"Phil's had a tough old season," said O'Neill. "When you're someone like him, who was injured on his second day back in pre-season, it's hard to get back to the pinnacle.

"But his fitness is improving and with that will come confidence.

"I wouldn't blame him at all if he is looking forward to seeing the back of this season so he can focus on the next one.

"But we rate him as properly fit now and the more players we have at our disposal, the better it will be at a time in the season when we need everyone at the club pulling together to get good results."

Sunderland are currently four points outside the relegation zone and Bardsley could return to the team against former club Manchester United after the international break.

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ven if United were to sign CR7 & Messi to play upfront, the fact remains Fletcher and Cleverly are playing in midfield. That's where the problem is. Fletcher is too slow with an awful pass, while Cleverly is simply rubbish

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hese days, these days, you can't say something racist without somebody saying that you're a racist.

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rop Rooney (he's so disappointing, overrated and overpaid), and play Di Maria and RVP upfront, much like the set up at the Netherlands team with Roben and RVP...

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