Sunderland on the edge of the relegation zone after away draw.
Sunderland remain in danger of relegation from the Premier League after Jason Puncheon’s late strike gave Southampton a 1-1 draw at the Stadium of Light on Sunday.
Paulo Di Canio’s team took the lead thanks to Phil Bardsley’s goal midway through the second half, but the Black Cats were pegged back by Puncheon’s equaliser with 14 minutes remaining.
The draw moved Sunderland four points clear of third bottom Wigan, but the FA Cup winners could narrow that gap to just a point if they can follow their shock win over Manchester City at Wembley with another surprise success in their game in hand at Arsenal on Tuesday.
Di Canio and company will be desperately hoping for an Arsenal victory which would condemn Wigan to relegation and avoid the need for Sunderland to get something from their last match of the season at Tottenham next weekend.
Southampton are five points above the relegation zone and are almost certain to stay up, although they are not mathematically safe ahead of their last match against Stoke.
Di Canio was down to the bare bones in terms of selection with Craig Gardner having joined Stephane Sessegnon on the suspended list and with both Lee Cattermole and Steven Fletcher injured the lack of depth in his squad was exposed by a bench boasting little or no Premier League experience.
Southampton dominated the first half and Simon Mignolet had to make a fine reaction save to keep out Jay Rodriguez’s 32nd-minute snapshot and was then grateful to see Rickie Lambert scuff another effort wide of the far post four minutes later.
Mignolet was even more relieved with three minutes of the half remaining when Lambert managed to control Steve Davis’ driven cross, but failed to get any power into his close-range shot.
Sunderland might have taken the lead early in the second half when Danny Rose fired the ball towards Danny Graham, only for the striker to completely miss his kick as his wait for a first goal since his January move from Swansea went on.
The hosts went ahead in the 68th minute when Adam Johnson slid the ball to Bardsley and the defender smashed a right-foot shot across Artur Boruc which deflected in off Jos Hooiveld.
However, Southampton were level eight minutes later when James Ward-Prowse crossed from the left for Puncheon to power a header towards goal.
Mignolet saved well but the Saints midfielder reacted first to poke the rebound into the roof of the net.