Martin: Two more wins and we're safe

Russell Martin thinks Norwich need two wins to stay in the league. Photo: PA

Defender Russell Martin believes Norwich's point from today's 1-1 draw with Sunderland at the Stadium of Light could be one of the biggest of their season.

Norwich were one up thanks to Wes Hoolahan's header before keeper Mark Bunn was dismissed for handling outside his area.

Five minutes before half-time Sebastien Bassong conceded a penalty, which was converted by Craig Gardner.

It all seemed to be going against the Canaries and although on his first viewing Martin disagreed with the decisions, he preferred to focus on the positives.

"To say that we could get a point before the game we would have taken it, but in the circumstances we got it, to play 60 odd minutes with 10 men it's a massive, massive point, because they could have caught up with us," he told Sky Sports 1.

"In the grand scheme of things for us it could be one of biggest points we got yet.

"I don't think he's got a hand on it, I haven't seen it again. But, by the letter of the law if he has then it's a sending off. I'll have to watch it again. I feel for 'Bunny', he has been brilliant for us.

"No (it's not a penalty), I think if you watch it at the time, (Steven) Fletcher comes from an offside position and the flag could have gone up. He's made a decision you have to deal with it.

"I think it was harsh, with them you have to be 100 per cent sure."

Norwich could have had a penalty themselves when Martin's cross was handled by Danny Rose and although a free-kick was awarded, replays showing the offence took place in the box.

"I thought it was in the area at the time," he said.

Martin has no doubts about what their target should be for the remainder of the season.

He said: "Two wins should definitely do it. Everyone goes on about the miracle 40 point mark."

Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill acknowledged his side might have got the rub of the green with regards to the Rose incident, but feels it was about time decisions started going their way.

"Norwich will be disappointed obviously, that might turn the game a bit as it turns out," he said.

"We can talk about decisions and we might have got a bit of luck, I've not seen it back.

"Not that we deserve much luck today, but I've seen about seven penalty decisions go against us in recent times.

"That bit of luck we didn't deserve, maybe went in our direction."

Like Martin, City manager Chris Hughton was focused on the performance of his players rather than the officials.

"Everybody will speak about three big decisions, but I owe it to this group of lads to praise the quality of the performance," he said.

"Yes, they had a lot of shots from outside the box, a lot of crosses we had to deal with and well, I can't praise them highly enough.

"There won't be anybody in this stadium who doesn't think we deserved at least a point."