Larsson denies West Brom

Sebastian Larsson netted a late equaliser as West Bromwich Albion and Sunderland played out an entertaining 2-2 draw at The Hawthorns.

Last Updated: 16/08/14 at 20:23 Post Comment

Sebastian Larsson: Netted late equaliser for Sunderland

Sebastian Larsson: Netted late equaliser for Sunderland

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Lee Cattermole broke the deadlock for Sunderland after just five minutes with a blistering strike into the top corner from 20 yards after West Brom defended a free-kick poorly.

The hosts fought back and equalised three minutes before half-time courtesy of Saido Berahino’s penalty after Valentin Roberge was deemed to have fouled Victor Anichebe, although Sunderland were furious with referee Neil Swarbrick’s decision.

Berahino then netted his second of the afternoon on 74 minutes to give West Brom the lead, slotting home Craig Gardner’s wonderful cross from close range.

Alan Irvine was denied a win in his first game in charge, though, as Larsson turned in a Patrick van Aanholt cross to round off a flowing move five minutes from time and earn Sunderland a point. 

Irvine, who was paraded on the pitch to good applause prior to kick-off, fielded three of his eight new signings in former Sunderland man Gardner, Andre Wisdom and Sebastien Pocognoli.

Record £10million buy Brown Ideye, not yet deemed match-fit, was left on the bench.

Sunderland gave a start to their headline summer signing Jack Rodwell and also gave a debut to Van Aanholt.

At first it seemed West Brom had settled the better, enjoying some good early possession, but it was Sunderland who showed the first flash of brilliance through Cattermole.

The midfielder collected the ball 25 yards out from Jonas Olsson's headed clearance, steadied himself and unleashed a powerful shot into the top corner which Ben Foster could only get fingertips to.

West Brom were not rocked by the setback and soon settled back into a rhythm which could bode well for the season.

They pieced together some slick moves and utilised the holding-up ability of Anichebe well, although they were initially restricted to long-range efforts.

Captain Chris Brunt went close with a good effort that curled narrowly wide and Pocognoli hit another crisp strike, although Vito Mannone was unconcerned as it drifted wide.

Mannone looked more worried when Berahino found space, but lashed into the side-netting.

Sunderland could have doubled their lead against the run of play when Larsson floated a free-kick into the box, but Roberge headed a clear-cut chance wide.

The visitors were made to pay for the miss, although they could have a legitimate gripe over the penalty after Anichebe appeared to go down at the slightest hint of a shirt-pull from Roberge.

Referee Swarbrick blew instantly, but stoked the tension by taking a few moments to indicate his decision.

When given the go-ahead, Berahino made no mistake with a well-taken spot-kick.

Sunderland lost their composure in the minutes that followed and Berahino benefited from some sloppy defending on a strong run, but Mannone got himself behind his shot.

The visitors survived a scare early in the second half as Mannone flapped and Craig Dawson thought he had forced the ball over the line, but the flag was raised for a foul on the goalkeeper.

Sunderland then started to show some spirit and created chances for Connor Wickham, who volleyed wide, and Steven Fletcher, whose header was ruled out for offside.

It proved a short-lived flurry from Sunderland and the Baggies claimed the lead after 74 minutes.

Mannone saved well from Graham Dorrans' long-range strike, but the ball stayed in play and Gardner was the quickest to react, quickly whipping in high cross to the far post.

Sunderland were still back-tracking and Berahino got ahead of Van Aanholt to tap home his second, to the clear frustration of Mannone, who looked angry with the defence.

Yet the visitors were not done and produced a move almost out of keeping with much of their earlier play five minutes from time.

Jordi Gomez found Van Aanholt down the left and his cut-back was deftly diverted past Foster by Larsson from six yards out.

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

P

robably the first list I've come across in a long time where I agree with a large majority of what was written. Can't agree with everything though, Zaba has had an awful season by his standards, I'd put Monreal (a player who I've never rated) up there, gotta give credit where it's due, he's really stepped up his game.

scroteymcbooger
F365's Top Ten Defenders Of The Season

S

ome top analysis here..... UNITED WOULD BE TOP IF IT WEREN'T FOR ALL THEM GAMES THEY LOST

benvo81
United Progress Stifled By Bottom-Half Record

N

ice work John.. have to agree with everything. Never measure your wealth in money.

wexford_blue
We're Not All Jealous Guys...

Footer 365

Arsene Wenger only wants to bring 'world-class' players to Arsenal

Arsene Wenger has revealed he is only looking to add “top, world-class players” to his Arsenal squad this summer.

Chelsea are the example to other clubs, says Gary Neville

Other Premier League clubs should take Chelsea's lead if they are to be more successful, says Gary Neville.

Burnley appeal Michael Duff red card against West Ham

Burnley have appealed against Michael Duff’s red card following his sending off against West Ham.

Mail Box

Arsenal Need Three. These Three...

One mailboxer has the realistic answers to Arsenal's summer transfer needs. We also have plenty more on Newcastle fans, handballs, Chelsea selling and Johnny...

Blaming Van Gaal For United Slump...

Wayne Rooney in midfield, the same balls aimed at Marouane Fellaini...Louis van Gaal has to find a solution. And a Burnley fan embraces relegation...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company