Sunderland 2-2 Crystal Palace: Five things learned as the Black Cats leave it late

What could Sam Allardyce take from the Wearsiders' draw on Tuesday?

Sunderland 2-2 Crystal Palace: Five things learned as the Black Cats leave it late
Fabio Borini celebrates his late equaliser against Crystal Palace. | Photo: Premier League

Fabio Borini scored a last minute equaliser against Crystal Palace at the Stadium of Light to ensure Sunderland climbed out of the bottom three.

Dame N’Doye put the home side ahead, although former Black Cat Connor Wickham scored a second half brace as Palace gained control. Borini then rescued a point for his side as he fired a powerful strike past Wayne Hennessey much to the jubilation of the home support.

What could the hosts learn from the point though, ahead of Saturday's clash with Southampton?

Jack Rodwell can be a major threat

The former Manchester City midfielder made an impact at the Boleyn Ground on Saturday, so Sam Allardyce made the decision to give Jack Rodwell another opportunity.

He didn’t disappoint against Palace and was heavily involved, creating a number of chances throughout. Rodwell also looked comfortable on the ball when in possession and certainly wasn’t afraid to put his foot in.

The midfielder is without doubt more dangerous than Lee Cattermole in an attacking sense, and he now needs a run of games without picking up an injury so he can claim a regular starting berth.

Rodwell could yet turn his Sunderland career around based on recent displays. | Photo: Getty
Rodwell could yet turn his Sunderland career around based on recent displays. | Photo: Getty

Dame N’Doye wasted out wide  

N’Doye has been steady in terms of his performance since he arrived on Wearside, albeit it is noticeable he isn’t a winger.

The Senegalese striker is a handful for the opposition, however, he isn’t a threat when running with the ball. Borini’s late goal on Tuesday night could see N’Doye dropped for the game against Southampton.

Sunderland are willing to fight

Allardyce’s side are clearly up for the fight to stay in the Premier League and have proved this over the last five games. The men in red and white appear to have fire in their bellies and this was demonstrated with a late comeback against the Eagles.

Sunderland have showed their fellow relegation rivals what they are capable of, following an impressive comeback at Anfield before seeing off Manchester United at the Stadium of Light. The intensity and determination from the players is evident and that can only prove to be a good thing as the season reaches it's climax.

Mistakes proving to be costly

Time and time again, an error has cost Sunderland precious points. Despite the North East side playing good football in recent games, a mistake has occurred on one two many occasions.

Billy Jones switched off against Manchester City to allow Sergio Agüero to score the only goal of the game, before doing the same at Liverpool just four days later.

Patrick van Aanholt’s poor clearance turned out to be the difference at West Ham United on Saturday and poor marking again here allowed Palace to take the lead on Tuesday.

Despite Sunderland fighting back to earn themselves a point, it is vital the players wipe out individual errors as it could be the decisive factor come end of the season.

Wahbi Khazri in a league of his own

Sunderland new boy Wahbi Khazri had a terrific first half against Alan Pardew’s men. The Tunisian international showed great skill and composure to get by a player and could be a vital asset in Sunderland’s bid to reach top flight safety.

Khazri has become a fan favourite since swapping Bordeaux for Wearside and has been a pleasure to watch. His vision and ability to pick a pass has been exceptional and offers a real threat going forward.