Alfred N'Diaye

N'Diaye's progress impressing O'Shea

by Stuart Vose

Midfielder backed to carry on shining.

John O’Shea has backed Alfred N’Diaye to continue being a tower of power in Sunderland’s midfield.

The athletic Frenchman has leant a real physical presence to the Black Cats’ engine room and put the shackles on Everton star Marouane Fellaini in Sunderland’s 1-0 win on Wearside.

He’s able to hold the ball up for us, break away down the wide areas and really kill the game

- O'Shea on N'Diaye

N’Diaye is still settling into life in the Barclays Premier League since his January move from Bursaspor and O’Shea can only see him getting better and better.

“When he [Alfred] first came to the club we knew he was going to grow into the role and he’s going to get stronger and fitter and more used to lasting out the full 90 minutes,” the stand-in skipper explained.

“He’s going to go from strength to strength.

“Also the organisational side of things is really helping him grow and become a stronger player for us – you saw he’s able to hold the ball up for us, break away down the wide areas and really kill the game for us.

“He’s going to pop up with a few goals as well.”

Stephane Sessegnon’s goal secured Sunderland’s second successive win – and another clean sheet to boot.

And O’Shea feels the side have become a much more cohesive unit, as underlined by the manner win which they dealt with everything Everton threw at them.

“It’s a huge three points,” he said. “Obviously since the manager has come in the big thing he has worked on in training is the organisational side of things and team shape.

“You saw the improvement again today against a real top quality Everton side. I thought we limited them to very few chances.

“It was a really pleasing performance because you can’t go into a game against Everton half-hearted because they’ve got real quality and a reliable, solid team.

“It was an all-round great performance and we were due one against Everton, I think.”