O'Neill feels for Fergie

Black Cats boss admits losing a title on goal difference is hard to take

Martin O'Neill: Found his Sunderland side at the centre of final day drama

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Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill knows only too well how Manchester United counterpart Sir Alex Ferguson will be feeling right now.

O'Neill's Black Cats found themselves at the centre of final day drama on Sunday as the Premier League title race went down to virtually the last kick of the season.

United were ready to celebrate after seeing off Sunderland 1-0 at the Stadium of Light, but saw a sensational finish to Manchester City's home date with Queens Park Rangers snatch the crown away.

A dramatic 3-2 victory for City saw them finish in first place, leaving United empty-handed as runners-up.

The two arch-rivals were separated only by goal difference in the final reckoning and O'Neill, who lost out on titles in similar circumstances with Wycombe and Celtic, admits United will find their failure difficult to stomach.

"It is so traumatic it's untrue," he told Sky Sports.


"You think throughout the whole season when you might have scored a couple of extra goals, maybe you start to think that there were one or two matches where you've made substitutions where you were leading quite comfortably in the game.

"I'm sure those thoughts are going through Sir Alex's mind. He's won enough championships to be able to consign this to history."

O'Neill claims he was unaware of what was going on at the Etihad Stadium in the closing stages, but admits a thrilling end has been provided to what has been a remarkable campaign.

He said: "It's been very dramatic. While we were very much a sideshow today, it has been incredible.

"Manchester United have come and done what they needed to do, win the game and take the chance that something might happen at the Etihad Stadium. It's just unfolded in the last two minutes of the match."