Football - Bramble points to Cattermole absence

Sunderland defender Titus Bramble says the absence of captain Lee Cattermole has hindered his side's chances of continuing their rise up the Barclays Premier League table.

Cattermole's season has been dogged by a knee complaint which forced him off in the home defeat to Arsenal, but he hopes to passed fit for the weekend trip to West Bromwich Albion.

Bramble told the Sunderland Echo: "Lee is someone that we've really missed. He's the captain and he can be a very influential player when he gets a run in the side.

"He's been a big miss over the last few months because he's a leader with this great will to win."