West Brom on Saturday.

In a pulsating Premier League encounter at the Stadium of Light, defeat for Sunderland meant that they have won just two of their last 20 league games.

“I was very pleased with the second-half performance, delighted with it.” O’Neill told BBC Sport.

While O’Neill will take take heart from the fact that his side showed grit and determination against a West Brom team in excellent form, the fact of the matter is that the Black Cats were outclassed throughout the game and lacked the creative spark that players such as Zoltan Gera showed for the Baggies.

The Sunderland boss will be hoping that the likes of Stephane Sessegnon, Adam Johnson and Steven Fletcher can have a similar impact for his team in the coming weeks as they look to fire themselves up the table.

Sunderland can expect to face a revitalised QPR team in their next outing, following the appointment of Harry Redknapp as their new manager.