Last Updated: Thu, 12 Apr 2012 11:06
Martin O'Neill has urged his Sunderland players to end the season on a high note to take the momentum into the new campaign.
The Black Cats boss is well aware that there is nothing much left to play for this season having guided the club away from the relegation battle since he took over from Steve Bruce in December.
And, the recent FA Cup quarter-final defeat at the hands of Everton banished any hopes of a trip to Wembley this season and a chance to pick up some long-awaited silverware.
However, O'Neill claims when he was a player he used to set himself targets to ensure he did not let his performance levels slip in the closing matches should the team have nothing to play for in terms of league or cup honours.
He told the Journal: "I know there's a finality at the end of the season and that's it over and you then have to start again. You press on the next season.
"But the more momentum we have at the end of the season, the better we'll feel in the closed season.
"When I played I always had little targets in mind.
"Even though I played wide right I'd always have the target of scoring a goal because you felt that was an important contribution in the game.
"If you could say you'd scored a goal every three games, at least it was keeping your momentum going. From the viewpoint of players, I think they should have little targets. There's nothing wrong with it.
"You maybe have to readjust if things are going terribly badly, or reappraise if things are going all right.
"Have I heard anyone talk about holidays? Absolutely not, although I haven't been in their dressing room. I wouldn't be thrilled if I did - maybe I've deliberately not been in their dressing room so as not to hear."
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