Sunderland made it three wins on the bounce in the Championship as they came away from Ewood Park with all three points against Blackburn Rovers on Wednesday night.
Tony Mowbray’s team have now moved up to fourth in the league table and are now preparing to host Cardiff City at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.
How well did Jack Clarke perform against Blackburn?
Black Cats forward Jack Clarke stole the headlines as the former Tottenham Hotspur winger caught the eye with two of the side’s three goals to seal the win.
The English attacker opened the scoring from 12 yards after winning a penalty to put Sunderland in front and then went on to score the third and final goal in the second half with a cool finish after Alex Pritchard set him away down the channel.
As per Sofascore, Clarke recorded three key passes and won a whopping 15 duels throughout the match, which included six successful dribbles out of seven attempted.
The 22-year-old ace also put the hard yards in defensively to win possession back for the team. He made two tackles and two interceptions to help out his defence, which shows that he was willing to track back to break up opposition attacks.
Alongside the ex-Leeds United prospect, central midfielder Dan Neil dominated Blackburn in the middle of the park for Mowbray throughout the game.
How many tackles did Dan Neil win against Blackburn?
The Black Cats academy product was a defensive force of nature for Sunderland as he won five tackles and made three interceptions across the 90 minutes.
As per Sofascore, Neil won eight of his 11 duels (73%) in total and also made one clearance to go along with his other defensive interventions. None of his teammates made as many tackles as the 21-year-old gem and only Jobe Bellingham (four) made more interceptions.
This shows that the talented youngster dominated Blackburn on the night as he won the vast majority of his battles and was the outstanding destroyer out of possession for Mowbray with his ability to break up the play frequently.
The technical dynamo, of course, also got himself on the scoresheet with a terrific finish from the edge of the box. He controlled brilliantly before finding the bottom corner after the ball fell his way from distance.
Along with that, Neil completed three of his five attempted dribbles and enjoyed a pass success rate of 82%, as per Sofascore. He provided moments of quality in possession, by beating a defender with the ball at his feet, and rounded it off with his goal, which made it 2-1 at the time.
The 5 foot 10 battler was sublime for Sunderland and deservedly received the second-highest Sofascore rating of the match (7.9) behind Clarke (9.5), which illustrates how well he performed in relation to the rest of the players on the pitch for Mowbray.
Hopefully, Neil will now be able to carry on this level of performance into the coming matches and then throughout the remainder of the season as he has the potential to impact games at both ends of the pitch with his ball-striking ability and knack for breaking up the play.