Jan Kirchhoff has expressed his delight at returning to the starting eleven in winning form.
The German midfielder has missed the majority of the season through injury but returned to the fold against Leicester, coming on at half-time to help his side make it three wins out of four. Kirchhoff is part of an injury-hampered Sunderland who’s midfield seems to weakening by the day.
Paddy McNair and Duncan Watmore are both set to miss the rest of the season, with Lee Cattermole and Lynden Gooch also facing lengthy spells on the sidelines. Fabio Borini and Seb Larsson have both suffered serious injury but are both back in the fold.
Kirchhoff, however, is back and ready to help Sunderland extend their winning run. The midfielder helped score Sunderland’s first goal on Saturday as his effort ricocheted off Robert Huth.
Happy to have him back
He joked: “For sure it was my goal, a ‘bullet header’ as you say in England and he had no choice but to put it in his own net. I was itching to get on and the sooner the better, so when I got the call at half-time I was really pleased.”
Kirchhoff has been a huge miss in Sunderland’s midfield and is delighted to be back on the pitch, “Personally it’s nice for me to be back on the pitch but for us, as a team, it is great to get another win here at the Stadium of Light."
He continued, “We’ve built more on our confidence and we want to keep this feeling going, especially when we are at home because when we are we need to be sleek and win as many games as we can for our fans."
Sunderland fans know all too well that the Stadium of Light is no longer a fortress and Kirchoff knows that they must change that and what better way to do that than during the busy Christmas period.
He said, “We want teams to dread coming to the Stadium of Light so it’s good that we’ve been able to win again, and we have two more home games coming up so let’s keep it going." The versatile German concluded, “Christmas is a busy time in the Premier League but we have a good chance of picking up some points."