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Cats bag win

Sunderland finally and deservedly got that much-sought-after first home win of the season against Fulham on Thursday.

It would be difficult to say too, that Sunderland did not deserve it, after they put in a hungry performance that overawed a lacklustre Fulham that only came alive when they were 2-0 down.

In short Fulham's first half performance was well below par and Sunderland came at them like a dog after a bone.

Both sides contributed to a poor first half, in which the only noteable opening contributions were a 50 yard free-kick from Liam Rosenior which floated unthreateningly wide. George McCartney also attempted a similar free kick, but with the same result.

But from watching the game, it was obvious who was the hungrier, and Sunderland duly took the lead against their opponents, albeit against the run of play.

McCartney fed Welsh down the left touchline, leaving Welsh enough space and time to put in an inviting cross for on-loan Liverpool striker Antony Le Tellac to head home into the bottom right corner.

McCartney and Welsh continued to combine well down the left and cause Fulham problems without really threatening a second goal before Diop struck from long-range sending the ball high into the crowd.

The second half looked much more promising for entertainment value as five minutes in, Tomasz Radzinski rounding Sunderland keeper Kelvin Davis failed to hit the target.

At the other end Justin Hoyte almost unforgivably stood on Nosworthy's bouncing cross rather than head it in with the goal at his mercy when it would have been easier to score.

Shortly after, the home supporters were fuming at ref Mike Riley's decision to only book Ian Pearce after a very aggressive lunge on Brown that should have seen red.

But Brown avenged the challenge in the 57th minute after poor goalkeeping by Mark Crossley let him in for an easy finish to make it 2-0.

That looked to be done and dusted until Tomaz Radzinski cut inside from the right and lashed a shot into the top left corner to set up a tense finish.

But despite all Fulham's pressure and Collins John firing into the side-netting after out-muscling Gary Breen, Sunderland hung on for a deserved first league victory at the Stadium of Light this season.

There are one or two very sore points that Coleman would have regretted as he left the north-east.

The first that this game was being replayed after a waterlogged pitch led to it being abandoned last month with Fulham 1-0 up.

The second that this was supposed to be the game that Fulham might finally have ended their barren league away run this season only for that to happen over the weekend with the 2-1 win over Manchester City.

It would have been nice to finish on a high for Chris Coleman, but there is always Sunday still to come. For Sunderland it was scarce consolation for a miserable season. They will not be relishing playing Championship football next season.




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The Journalist

Writer: Ollie Sheehan Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday May 6 2006

Time: 12:09AM

Your Comments

I can't believe it. it was the one away game of the season that i really thought we would win.
Ollie Sheehan
good win for sunderland but what is up with your away form. its just like ours was.
jono_forest
An average season, with average results and an average finish. I'm really glad that i follow pompey. None of that for us. We have thrills galore,lol.
FEn_100
When the team with the worst away record travels to the team with the worst Home record something has to happen. We got the double over both of them. PUP.
pompeygray
Well i'm glad that Sunderland fans finally had something to cheer about, And we were absolutely amazing at Sunderland 4-1 to the super Pompey
Linvoy#1
I cant believe you lost that game! Sunderland were so bad last season!
richy23
 

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