SAFC 1 Man City 0: Lads to the aid of my party


On Salut! Sunderland‘s birthday – the codger whose name appears at the end of this report, not the site – a riproaring second-half performance crowned by a Darren Bent penalty deep in stoppage time brought a sensational victory.



Made
to look second best in the first half, and deprived by nasty injuries of Michael Turner and Fraizer Campbell at the break, we went on to play such lively and threatening football that anything less than one point would have been a travesty.

And for sheer spirit and persistence against a team that expects top four status as of right, it was a win entirely merited.

In the first half, it had seemed that any thought that Sunderland could stand in the way of City’s ambitions was purely fanciful, such was the apparent gap in class.

We preserved level pegging only because of one astonishing miss by Carlos Tevez, a second less wretched miss by the same player (give Michael Turner credit for the block) and a desperate last-gasp save by Mignolet from Toure.

At the other end? Well, there hadn’t been much of an other end really, if you overlook one shot by Henderson, well wide. As the half ended with Turner hobbling and Campbell on a stretcher, it seemed rational to fear for the worst after the break.

But we had played well in patches, notably with robust defending and intelligent passing in midfield.

As the second half began, with Welbeck and Bardsley on for our casualties, the passion and verve of our play made a mockery of City’s early dominance and that difference of quality.

On my intermittent stream, Al Muhammadi and – making up for a couple of earlier lapses that neatly led to goals – Richardson had storming second halves. The reshaped defence played a collective blinder. And Mignolet produced a world-class save at 0-0.

Salut! Sunderland is off to celebrate heartily in the south of France. What a fabulous way to get our season properly started.

And we know we should have listened, when feeling gloomy at half time, to the wiser counsel of Pete Sixsmith – see his Sixer’s Sevens verdict by clicking here – whose text message from the East Stand had read: “Hanging on but playing well.”


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Colin Randall

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5 thoughts on “SAFC 1 Man City 0: Lads to the aid of my party”

  1. Fair play to Big Niall’s boys. I think if Tev had scored the tap-in we’d have stuffed you but you got your act together good style in the second half – although I have to say I never thought you looked like scoring. I’ve always been a big admirer of Malbranque and the Egyptian geezer cut Lescott to ribbons but then so would my grandson age 10.
    You look as though you might have a goalkeeper and Richardson as a defender was a revelation – I’d never have thought he’d have had the bottle.
    Anyhow, well played

  2. Gotta hope it’s Gyan. We needed him today, just as we need to create more scoring opportunities and capitalize on them. But Al-Muhammadi was a real asset, which was good see, and Mignolet’s starting to earn his keep. I’d rather we had a weak first half and a strong second than vice-versa. We’ve seen how that can lose us games.

  3. Great game to watch, yes we did get away with a few early mistakes but felt the second half performance was very good. I think I am coming round the idea of richardson at left back, he perfomed very well and tracked back at the right times although a few loose balls did slightly tarnish his overall performance. Steed was also very good as well, twisting and turning players all afternoon. It was clearly obvious that we lacked that extra bit of fire power upfront and although welbeck did well he is still young and a man u player. I couldn’t finish without a note about Al Muhammadi gave us that needed pace, which, did produce options going forward and helped ease the pressure when needed, hope we sign him up during the Jan window. Any ideas who bruce is tracking?

  4. We have lost so many games in the dying minutes it’s nice to win one. I was sunbathing in the garden when a text from Jamaica told me we had won. Looking forward to watching the game on Setanta tonight.

  5. Best performance in a long time. We rode our luck at times and you would stick your life savings on Tevez scoring his chance any other day but we fully deserved the 3 points. Lets hope the season starts here!!!

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