Adam Johnson claims his winner against former club Manchester City was 'in the script' as Sunderland stunned the Premier League champions.
Johnson scored for City at the Stadium of Light in March 2010 and he was on target again in the Boxing Day clash - but for the Black Cats this time.
The winger has struggled to settle into life on Wearside since his £10million summer move from the Etihad Stadium, but his third goal for the club signalled an important win which took Martin O'Neill's side seven points clear of the drop zone.
Johnson told the Sunderland Echo: "It's crazy how football works. I scored the equaliser for City at the Stadium of Light three years ago and now to score the winner for Sunderland against City was in the script I suppose.
"Without a doubt, that's the highlight ... although there haven't too many so far to be honest!
"But from the team's point of view and for who we've just beaten and everything that goes with it regarding me, it was definitely the highlight.
"The crowd were so loud from the very start. We pressed and got them behind us and that's what we need to do here. We need to show the fight we showed yesterday.
"It's important anytime to get three points, but it just makes it a little better with the opposition.
"We're delighted to get the win and the lads deserve a lot of credit."