AFTER back-to-back Premier League victories, John O'Shea believes the Black Cats can start to climb the Premier League ladder.
Fraizer Campbell's move to Cardiff City earlier this week suggests a degree of optimism that the arrival of a new striker is imminent at the Stadium of Light.
Five wins in the last eight league games has catapulted the team from relegation danger to a relatively comfortable 11th. Saturday's 3-2 win over Wigan Athletic wiped out the psychological damage of exiting the FA Cup to Bolton Wanderers days earlier.
"We're looking forward now," said vice-captain O'Shea.
"The lads were absolutely gutted after the Bolton defeat. We didn't play anywhere near the level we're capable of.
"It would have been nice to have a home game against Everton in the FA Cup, but I think we took our eye off the ball and credit to Bolton for playing well. We know if we'd played to our full potential we would have got a good result.
"We've had some very good results against Southampton, Man City and now the two in the last week or so (against West Ham United and Wigan). It's looking a lot healthier in terms of position in the league table and points-wise because we're now not too far away from seventh or eighth, but we're also not too far from 16th of 17th so we know it can change very quickly.
"The start of the season was quite slow in terms of players getting fit and new lads settling in. Fingers crossed there will be a few more new lads coming in as well.
"The lads that have already come in have settled well. Alfie (N'Diaye) was fantastic (at Wigan). He put in a great cross for (Steven) Fletcher's goal and when he settles in he will be a real bonus for us and you never know who else might come."