The Black Cats beat Peterborough 2-0 in their first game since Paolo Di Canio's dismissal and their caretaker boss expects them to build on that performance on SundayCaretaker boss Kevin Ball hopes Sunderland's Capital One Cup victory over Peterborough will give the squad confidence ahead of the visit of Liverpool.
Goals from Emanuele Giaccherini and Valentin Roberge saw the Black Cats end a run of three consecutive defeats and advance to the fourth round, and Ball believes the improved team spirit is key for the Sunday clash.
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"It was a good performance [on Tuesday] and I was delighted for the players. Now we have to take that into Sunday’s game.
"In terms of the game, it’s a fabulous occasion and every footballer would be delighted."
The 48-year-old gave first starts of the season to Lee Cattermole and Carlos Cuellar after they were overlooked under Paolo Di Canio, and believes the pair's know-how is a vital asset for the team.
"The experienced players are important," he continued. "It was good to see Lee back and he enjoyed the game; you could see that.
"He got on the ball, passed and tackled well and did what a good central midfielder does. Lee did well in the game and his actions and attitude were first class.”
Luis Suarez also made a comeback in midweek, returning to the Liverpool side after serving a 10-game ban, and Ball is under no illusions about the quality his side will be up against on Sunday.
"From Liverpool’s point of view, their objectives for the season are there for all to see," he explained. "We know what to expect and it’s up to us to counteract that and impose ourselves on the game.
"I’ve always said to players - just give me 100 per cent of what you can do. They will often surprise themselves with what they can achieve.
"The biggest thing is pushing yourself, then hopefully the game comes easier. They know what they need to do and put in - they don’t need me as a coach telling them that."