Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: Cats' Star Striker Tells of Debt to McCarthy

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: Cats' Star Striker Tells of Debt to McCarthy

Article excerpt

Byline: By Luke Edwards

STEPHEN Elliott is rapidly becoming Roy Keane's star performer at Sunderland - but the predatory Republic of Ireland international has also revealed his debt to the man once considered his manager's nemesis.

Elliott's late-strike against Wolverhampton Wanderers on Friday night ensured Keane and Mick McCarthy shared the spoils on their reunion night at Molineux.

And while Sunderland's top goalscorer this season claimed not to have seen or worried about the reconciliation between his Black Cats managers past and present, the ending of their hostilities did allow the 22-year-old to give his thanks to the man he believes kick-started his career when he brought him to the Stadium of Light from Manchester City's reserves more than two years ago.

"I said hello to Mick and Taff (Ian Evans) after the game and it was good to see them and have a chat," said Elliott, who has scored five goals in eight starts this season following his valuable equaliser against Wolves. "I'll always be indebted to him for what he has done for my career.

"He brought me to Sunderland from Manchester City and, if it wasn't for him, all of this might not have happened. He gave me a chance and I'd like to thank him for that.

"There was a lot made about the two managers before the game on Friday but I don't think it affected any of the players. The players just got on with the game and we don't really see anything else that's going on in the background.

"That's what the manager wanted us to do and I think we did that. I didn't even see the handshake or the posse of photographers with their flashing cameras, it had nothing to do with how we performed."

In truth, Sunderland's performance against Wolves was a poor one and Keane must be concerned at the way his side continue to underperform when they are on the road. The Wearsiders have won just once away from home since the thrilling 3-0 destruction of Leeds United on September 13 - and that came at relegation-threatened Hull City. …

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