Matt Kilgallon

Kilgallon - I'll keep believing

by Stuart Vose

Matt ready to tie down first-team spot.

Matt Kilgallon is turning into Sunderland’s comeback king.

The stylish defender was thrown in against QPR due to injuries and impressed alongside Carlos Cuellar, helping his side keep a clean sheet.

The appearance was Kilgallon’s first in the Barclays Premier League this season after he also impressed in a cameo role last term.

He helped keep Manchester City out as Sunderland recorded a famous win back on New Year’s Day and went on to make 10 further appearances in 2011-12.

Now an injury to John O’Shea has handed the former Sheffield United man his latest chance and he believes that self-confidence is key.

“I’ve just got to believe in myself; when I got the opportunity to play [on Tuesday] I couldn’t wait,” said Kilgallon, whose side have conceded just 13 goals in the last 13 games he’s played.

“I’ve been keeping myself fit in training and trying to make sure I don’t let anyone down. I thought I did a job [on Tuesday night].

“It’s all about confidence and I got off to a good start. I won a few headers and that helped me settle in quicker.

“With Danny [Rose], Carlos [Cuellar] and Phil Bardsley all talking, they made it easier for me too.

“I’m ready to go whenever I’m called on.”

Kilgallon is likely to be up against Titus Bramble for a starting spot this weekend as Sunderland head to Norwich.

The Canaries have enjoyed a good start to the season but Kilgallon says Sunderland are in with a chance if they can remain vigilant at the back.

“They’ve been doing well and we’ve played well away from home too recently so it should be an interesting game," he explained.

“Everybody will be up for it. Hopefully I can get another run-out but we’ll have to wait and see.

“There’s a few familiar faces there for me [Michael Turner and former Leeds team-mate Jonny Howson] and it will be nice to see them, but we’ll be going there wanting to beat them.

“If we can keep a clean sheet then we’ve half a chance, so let’s go for it.”