Van Der Sar: we need to close gap at top

EDWIN van der Sar left Sunderland bemoaning more dropped points having spared Manchester United further pain.

The keeper made a fine 16th-minute save from Steed Malbranque after the Frenchman has waltzed through the United defence to collect Lee Cattermole’s pass, and Vidic got in a vital block to repel Nedum Onuoha’s snapshot.

Van der Sar needed the help of a post to keep out compatriot Bolo Zenden’s 37th-minute strike from distance, and although United, who were without Wayne Rooney, improved significantly with Dimitar Berbatov’s introduction as a half-time substitute, they were happy to hear the final whistle when it came.

Van der Sar said: “We were happy to go in at half-time with it 0-0. In the last 15 minutes we had one or two chances, but not enough to get the winner.

“I don’t think we put enough in our offensive game to really claim the three points. I don’t think the service was sufficient to get the goal in the end.

“We can be happy that we had a clean sheet, the second in a row after Valencia on Wednesday, but I think it was two dropped points.

“We were disappointed with a draw at Bolton, we got a nice win in Valencia which sets us well for the Champions League and of course, here you are looking for a win to close the gap a little bit.”


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