Poyet: I know the first-name on the team-sheet for Sunderland's match

Gus Poyet has revealed that Steven Fletcher is a guaranteed starter in Sunderland's next match.

Sunderland manager says that Steven Fletcher will be the first name on the team-sheet when the squad return from the international break.

Fletcher scored twice in the Black Cats' 3-1 success at the weekend against Stoke City and Poyet has admitted that his display will be enough to keep him in the starting line-up for a prolonged period of time.

“Who is the first one to be picked in two weeks’ time? It’s Fletcher, because he scored two," he revealed to the Sunderland Echo.

“It’s not difficult. I’m not going to leave him out now he’s scored two.

“I think that’s good for us and clear for the players as well.”

The former Wolverhampton Wanderers front-man has struggled for form and starts for some time now, with injuries hampering his progress, but he is a goalscorer on his day.

His finishing touch was on full display this weekend, as his brace helped Sunderland to their first win of the season and Fletcher's relief was obvious.

His celebrations showed a lot of frustration and hurt, but Poyet says that his reluctance to utilise him more often in his starting line-up has been a motivation technique which worked to perfection at the weekend.

"He (Fletcher) wasn’t happy [about being left out in recent weeks], professionally," Poyet said. "He was naturally serious for a few days because he didn’t like it.

“But there were no problems, no complaints, just a professional player not being happy because he wants to play.

“I knew he would do everything possible to prove me wrong. He’s a good character and a strong character.

“And when you have a chance – do it. Then the manager can’t say a word.

Fletcher now will be hoping to continue finding the back of the net when he returns to action in a fortnight's time. 

The Black Cats take on Southampton after the international break and they will be looking to build on their first three point haul. 

Sunderland have proven tough to beat this season, picking up a number of draws, but their winless run was becoming concerning.

However, having broken out of their slump, they will be hoping to build momentum and a victory over the Saints in two weeks' time would be a great way to start.

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