Stadium of Light

Next Game

S'land v Burnley

Saturday, 31 January 2015, 15:00

Barclays Prem

Stadium of Light

Last Game

S'land 0 - 0 Fulham

Saturday, 24 January 2015, 15:00

The FA Cup Fourth Round

Gardner can net double figures

Martin O'Neill believes that midfielder Craig Gardner could be the goal-scoring catalyst his side need in order to push on in the Premier League.

Last Updated: 07/11/12 at 14:11 Post Comment

Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill believes midfielder Craig Gardner has the

Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill believes midfielder Craig Gardner has the

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Sunderland have only managed six league goals this season with new signing Stephen Fletcher bagging five, and the sixth coming courtesy of a Demba Ba own goal.

Gardner, 25, has only scored once this season, netting in the Black Cats' victory over MK Dons in the Capital One Cup, but his manager is backing him to find the net on a more regular basis.

"I feel that Craig should have ten league goals at the end of every season - regardless of the number of games that he plays," said O'Neill.

"When I say 'regardless of the number of games that he plays', I mean of course assuming he plays upwards of 25 of course. It would be asking a bit much if he only played eight or nine times!

"But Craig's eye for goal really could be a tremendous asset for us.

"He has got a great shot, he gets into dangerous positions and he hits the ball as strongly and as truly as anyone in the Premier League."

Gardner signed from Birmingham for £5million after an impressive run for the Blues, which saw him net double figures in his final season at St Andrews, however chances at goal have been at a premium this season after he has been forced to fill in at right-back for the injured Phil Bardsley.

O'Neill added: "Playing at full-back, he was unable to get into those forward advanced midfield positions but now he is back in midfield, I will be looking for him to contribute some goals.

"We need goals from other sources, we know that. Steven Fletcher has made a very good start since joining us in the summer but we can't put all the goalscoring burden on one man. Other players have to share the load.

"At the moment we are just not creating enough chances and that needs to change. We know that, we recognise it and we are working hard to find ways of improving it."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

F

irst Townsend, now Chiles. What next ITV? Comedy that you can actually watch without vomiting up your own spleen? I'll be sad to see Matt Smith go though. I actually quite like him. Plus, he was good in Doctor Who.

sailingmagpie
Adrian Chiles to leave ITV

H

e's like Jay from Inbetweeners. Could've had him, had him, didn't want him, turned him down.

lee
Wenger criticises work permits

A

wful, awful pundit. He was crap on BBC, and offered a little more analysis than Robbie Savage - apart from the delivery of banality in a sexy accent. Also, as I'm Irish he'll never be more then a slimy, hand-balling f**ker in my eyes.

batdog
Football People On TV: Thierry Henry

Footer 365

Sepp Blatter shrugs-off UEFA's challenge to his leadership as 'lacking courage'

Sepp Blatter tells UEFA “they do not have the courage” to sufficiently challenge his leadership at this year's election.

Transfer news: Sam Allardyce unsure whether Darren Fletcher will join West Ham

Manager Sam Allardyce admits he is unsure whether Darren Fletcher will choose to join West Ham or another club.

Transfer news: Wigan close to signings of Chris Herd from Aston Villa and Jason Pearce from Leeds

Wigan are close to signing Aston Villa's Chris Herd on loan and Leeds' Jason Pearce permanently, Sky sources understand.

Mail Box

Appalling, Slow, Pathetic, Embarrassing

It's a bonus Saturday Mailbox, with plenty of reaction to the most alarming 0-0 draw in Manchester United's recent history. At what point do we worry about Louis van Gaal?

Why Do Man United Look So Impotent?

It's all very well talking about formations and United's defensive problems, but shouldn't their expensive attacking options be doing better? And we talk psychology...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company