Quinn backing for Bruce
NIALL QUINN has pledged to support Steve Bruce as the Sunderland manager plots another summer in the transfer market. Bruce steered the Black Cats to a tenth-place finish with a final-day victory at West Ham United, but a remarkable dip in fortunes in the new year coupled with injuries to ten first-team players led Bruce to call for a large influx of players to bolster his squad. While it is not expected that owner Ellis Short will provide the financial backing previously seen on Wearside, Bruce at least has the support of his chairman as Sunderland look to improve on their first tophalf finish in a decade. Quinn said: It's been an up and down sort of season but I think the way it came to a close made us all quietly satisfied. Our target, even when we reached sixth in January, was always to finish in the top ten so to achieve that, albeit in such a dramatic way, was pleasing. Given the fantastic first five or six months we had at the start, it's understandable that there is a shade of wondering what might have been. But the excuses for that dip in results since the end of January are fully justified and it's important that we consider the injury situation and how we can alleviate that as we analyse the season and look to continue progressing next year. Sunderland will kick off their fifth consecutive season in the Premier League in August their longest stint in the top-flight since 1985 and Quinn is confident that, with sensible investment, Sunderland can push for higher ground next season. Quinn added: Progress is, of course, what we are constantly striving for you can't afford to rest on your laurels in the Premier League so we'll be looking to support the manager over the summer months as we build on the solid platform the owner has given us. One of the major positives for me was to watch the final games of the season and for us not to be looking over our shoulders. It was such a dramatic final day for those teams trying to stay in the division and it was great to watch that part of the table with a degree of detachment. It's been a good few years since the club maintained its top-flight status for this long. We're now an established club in the Premier League and I'm delighted for our supporters that that is the case.
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