Sunderland boss Jack Ross believes his side’s performance in the 1-1 draw against Blackpool was the best the Black Cats had performed in a “number of weeks”.
His side salvaged a point thanks to Jack Baldwin’s header 15 minutes from time to cancel out Armand Gnanduillet’s first-half piledriver.
It meant Sunderland claimed their 13th draw of the season and left them in fourth place in League One, four points off the top two.
Ross told the Sunderland Echo: “Our remit is to get out of this league. We are fourth in the league, so do we want to be top? Of course we do.
“Are we in a position with 16 or 17 league games to go that we can achieve promotion? Absolutely.
“We have only been beaten twice this season, scored in every league game. It depends how you view it.
“There are 50 per cent of people out there who will say it is not good enough, 50 per cent will be realistic and say it is alright. I am happy to discuss that with anyone.
“The players had a sticky patch for 15 minutes and it was a bit uneasy in the stadium, they had two choices at half-time - come out and play the second 45 in the same manner or show the character they have shown all season. They did that.
“For me, they deserve to wear that jersey. I will put my name to that all day long. They keep doing that, they will get their rewards one way or the other.
“Tonight was for me the best we have played in a number of weeks.
“Just looking at this game in isolation then yeah it is almost there. The frustration this time was playing well and not winning it.
“That was more like how we played earlier in the season, the energy we had. It was more reflective what we want.
“The performance level, if we keep doing that, we will win more than we won’t over the remaining fixtures.”