Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce details his role on the training ground

Sunderland Stadium of Light

Big Sam's methods already appear to be making a difference at the Stadium of Light.

Sunderland boss Sam Allardyce has shed light on the role he has taken in training as he bids to turn things around at the Wearside club.

The Black Cats registered their first win of the season against bitter rivals Newcastle yesterday and the influence of Big Sam is already becoming clear.

“I’m just working defensively, I’m leaving the attacking side of things to Paul Bracewell and Robbie Stockdale,” he told the ‘Alan Brazil Breakfast Show’ on talkSPORT this morning (aired at 08:40).

“I’m focusing on the fact that when I arrived, we had conceded 18 goals in eight games and it was simply a case of if we don’t put that right we’ve got no chance of moving away from the bottom of the table.”

“We had a clean sheet yesterday and we should have had a clean sheet at West Brom so that side of it is getting better.”

Sunderland were unlucky to concede in Allardyce’s first game, via a controversial Saido Berahino goal, but have already begun to look a more compact and solid unit under the guidance of the former West Ham manager.

In the likes of Steven Fletcher, Jermain Defoe and Jeremain Lens, Sunderland have the personnel to hurt teams and Allardyce feels improving fitness levels will be key to improving their form in front of goal.

“The attacking side will hopefully come later on perhaps when the lads are a little bit fitter,” he added.

Their three-goal haul – albeit against ten men – will have done the world of good to the Black Cats’ confidence and the task for Allardyce now is to maintain that form in difficult tests against Everton and Southampton.

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