Published: 08:14, 09 March 2020
| Updated: 08:19, 09 March 2020
Steve Evans saluted the Gillingham fans who followed them on the road at the weekend.
The Gills manager described the 473 away supporters as “incredible” and was delighted to be sending them home with something to cheer, even though he felt they could have taken all three points.
“We really heard them at 1-1,” said the 57-year-old Gillingham boss. “They were in full voice and we were the dominant side as they were left counter attacking.
“Our supporters must have been devastated to see the second goal go in from absolutely nowhere.”
Sunderland thought they had won it at 2-1 but Mikael Mandron grabbed a stoppage-time equaliser.
“The fans certainly found their voice when the second goal went in,” Evans added.
Those supporters had an early start from Gillingham for the 300-mile journey north but Evans was up early too – enjoying a morning stroll around the 49,000 capacity Stadium of Light, which was home to Premier League football as recently as the 2016/17 campaign.
Back-to-back relegations have seen the Black Cats ply their trade in League 1 for the last two seasons.
He said: “I walked around the place at quarter to seven on Saturday morning, it’s a stadium that puts hairs on the back of your neck.
“I am always up early, I could see the stadium in the distance so I went there and walked around it.
“It is one of those iconic stadiums in England and for the league that we are in, it is an incredible place.”