Bruce salutes Sunderland resilience

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Sunderland boss Steve Bruce was a happy man after seeing his side battle their way to a much-needed victory over Aston Villa.

The eighth own goal of Villa defender Richard Dunne's career handed the Black Cats just their second Barclays Premier League win of the season, extended their unbeaten run to seven league games and took them into seventh place in the table.

Bruce said: "Seven games unbeaten in the Premier League takes some doing, no matter who you play against, so there is a bit of resilience. We invested heavily in the back four and the goalkeeper and when I look behind me and I have got four people who played in the quarter-finals of the World Cup, and I have got Britain's most expensive goalkeeper sitting behind me too."

He added: "We have got a really good look about us, so I am pleased.

"There's a resilience about us, which was the first thing I wanted to try to address when we came here."

Villa boss Gerard Houllier was disappointed to be leaving Wearside empty-handed, and his misery was compounded by the knee injury which forced captain Stiliyan Petrov off before the break with suspected knee ligament damage.

Houllier said: "I am very disappointed with the result. We should, as a reward at least, have got one goal and probably got a draw.

"I thought we started well. Our morale probably went down when we conceded that own goal because we had a bit of a slump, but the second half was night and day with the first half.

"We were quicker, better, sharper and created chance after chance, but unfortunately we didn't manage to put the ball in the back of the net.

"This is my only regret because I was pleased with the effort of the players and their reaction."

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Stiliyan Petrov
Premier League
Steve Bruce
Richard Dunne
Aston Villa

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