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Deadly Defoe saves Sunderland

Sunderland
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Loovens: Celtic now have the 'right balance'

Celtic defender Glenn Loovens believes the team have stepped up performances because Tony Mowbray has found the "right balance''.

An unchanged Celtic clinched a fourth consecutive victory for the first time under Mowbray when they beat Motherwell 3-2 at Fir Park on Saturday.

Mowbray had also kept an unchanged outfield line-up for the previous Scottish Premier League game, an impressive 3-0 victory over Aberdeen, with the fit-again Artur Boruc replacing Lukasz Zaluska in goal.

The Celtic manager only made one change in the previous two games after taking time to find his preferred line-up when he joined the club from West Brom in the summer.

Mowbray used 27 players in his first three months in charge and made an average of three changes per game during a difficult 10-match spell - which immediately preceded their winning run - when Celtic won just twice.

Loovens has kept club captain Stephen McManus out of the team during their four-match streak, which has also seen victories against St Mirren and Hapoel Tel Aviv.

The Dutchman, speaking ahead of their dead rubber Europa League clash with Rapid Vienna in Austria, feels the settled team can continue to grow in confidence.

"That's four wins in a row and four good performances so the team also looks to have settled now,'' the Holland international told the club's official website. There aren't as many changes as there were earlier in the season. We've found the right balance and it seems to be working.

"It's understandable that the manager made changes when he came in. He was new to the job. That was the first time he had met and worked with most of the lads and he needed to find the right team and the right balance.

"But now I think he has found what he's looking for. We are playing well and hopefully we can keep winning.''

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