The team left it late to recover a 1-0 deficitm which they achieved with one less player on the field after Fonte had been given his marching orders eleven minutes from time.
Although frustrated by Saints’ 85th minute setback to Jermain Defoe’s goal, Fonte’s teammate Virgil van Dijk popped up late on to rescue a point and the Saints skipper thought that the team could have been out of sight long before his sending off.
“In the end it’s a good point,” he told reporters after the game.
“Obviously with one man less, one point is a minimum result.
"In the first half if we had taken them there were two or three chances if I recall that would have opened up the game which would have made it much easier for us but we didn’t take them.
"When the game is 0-0 they sat deep, they defended with a lot of men behind the ball and it was difficult to break them down. They made it tough for us.
"I thought although we didn’t play our best football we were still in control of the game and we created the better chances especially the two in the first half and in the end we got the point that we at least deserved."
Fonte was shown a red card in the 79th minute after hauling down Sunderland striker Fabio Borini as he bore down on goal, and the defender cut a disappointed figure as he left the pitch, with a one-match ban looming.
“I haven’t seen the video so I need to go home and check on TV with the replay,” he said. “It was 50-50.
“I have to see it again. For me, I don’t have the complete view so I have to go and see the video.
“It was either let him go and he would probably score or try to tackle and try to do something about it because late in the game and it was one against one, so I had to make a split-second decision and I had to try and tackle.
“I tried to keep the team in the game and it was outside the box, but it was disappointing.”