FABIO BORINI insists the Capital One Cup can help, not hinder, Sunderland’s bid to remain in the Premier League.
Sunderland host title-chasing Chelsea in the cup quarter-finals tomorrow night on the back of a frustrating stalemate at West Ham on Saturday, as the Black Cats failed to convert their domination into a first away win of the season.
Gus Poyet’s side, now guaranteed to be at the foot of the table at Christmas, remain five points adrift of safety ahead of another crunch meeting against a bottom-half side, with Norwich visiting the Stadium of Light this Saturday.
That will be the third draining game in a week for Sunderland, but on-loan Liverpool forward Borini believes a cup upset tomorrow would give the Black Cats a huge confidence boost for the clash with the Canaries.
Borini told the Echo: “No, it’s not a distraction. It’s a great chance to bring happiness around us.
“And obviously, if you beat Chelsea in the cup and get through to the semi-final, it would give us some great confidence.
“We need to take the positives from West Ham and go on to tomorrow and Saturday.
“Obviously, there have been lots of changes at the club over the last few months, but now I think we’re getting the consistency in our play.”
Sunderland enjoyed the bulk of the clear-cut opportunities at Upton Park, with Borini and Jozy Altidore both spurning chances in the first half, while Phil Bardsley struck the crossbar and Ki Sung-Yueng was denied by a smart second-half save from Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Poyet’s side had gone to the East End realising that they were facing a “make or break” stage of the campaign to haul back the deficit with those teams above them.
And Borini admits Sunderland were left with mixed emotions after coming away with a solitary point.
The 22-year-old added: “We need wins, especially against the teams that are directly around us in the table.
“We did everything to win. Everyone can see that and obviously when you get a point, usually you say it’s better than nothing.
“But we wanted the three points.
“We went there to win and I think we deserved to.
“We played very well, the way the manager wants us to play.
“But it’s obviously frustrating that we didn’t get the extra two points.
“We’re maybe lacking a bit of luck, but I always say that you however you play, you make your own luck on the pitch.”