Sep 29, 2013, 12:55 PM EDT
A wonderfully bright display of attacking prowess by both sides put on a show at the Stadium of Light, but Liverpool pulled out the expected result as they move to second place with a 3-1 win, their 400th Premier League victory.
It was Liverpool who looked the most dangerous in the opening few minutes, but Sunderland had their moments of creativity. Suarez and Sturridge paired together looked a great decision by Rogers, as the two both tested the fluidity of the Sunderland defense early.
The Reds thought they had the opener inside 10 minutes when a Suarez free kick found Martin Skrtel‘s head but the offsides flag had gone up.
Sunderland then began to threaten even more, much to the surprise and delight of the home fans. They looked inspired under interm manager Kevin Ball, taking over for the fired Paolo Di Canio.
Liverpool responded in the 28th minute when the Reds earned a corner, and Gerrard’s kick met Daniel Sturridge’s head…actually his shoulder…and into the back of the net. No one on the pitch claimed handball, but replays showed Sturridge directed the ball goalwards with his shoulder. Nonetheless Liverpool took a 1-0 lead.
More controversy just after as Sunderland searched to level the score. Mignolet collected a corner but spilled it, and Kolo Toure appeared to pass it back to his goalkeeper. Referee Howard Webb instead said the pass was legal, and replays suggested Toure may have intended to clear but Mignolet got in the way.
Suarez matched Sturridge’s tally and doubled Liverpool’s led in the 36th minute. Steven Gerrard‘s pass threaded through Sturridge, and he low crossed to his strike partner lurking at the far post for an easy finish and a 2-0 lead.
In the second half again both sides threatened on goal, but it was Sunderland who pulled one back in the 52nd minute. Emmanuel Giaccherini pounced on a rebound from Ki Seung-Young’s shot and Mignolet, once he spilled it, had no chance at stopping the putback.
The goal lit up the Sunderland squad, and they began to pepper the Liverpool goal. Giaccherini, Altidore, and Larsson all came close to equalizing the score. With both teams pressing for the next goal, the goalkeepers began to step up.
With the game flying open and both sides looking at chance after chance, Liverpool finally killed off any chance for Sunderland at the death. The Uruguayan put up a perfect long ball for Sturridge who put a wonderful move down the left, and again cut it back for his strike partner Suarez to crash home on the empty net to seal the scoreline.
It was a great shift by the Sunderland players under Ball, especially from Giaccherini, but the loss means the Black Cats remain bottom of the table. It was a tall task for the interm manager, but things at least look quite positive against a much better and sharper opponent.
Sunderland – Giaccherini 52′
Liverpool – Sturridge 28′, Suarez 36′, 89′
Sunderland – Westwood; Gardner, Colback, O’Shea, Cuellar; Larsson (Mavrias, 85′), Cattermole (Celustka, 74′), Ki, Johnson, Giaccherini; Altidore.
Liverpool – Mignolet; Toure, Sakho, Skrtel, Enrique; Henderson, Gerrard; Lucas, Moses (Sterling, 75′); Suarez, Sturridge
Mar 9, 2014, 5:35 PM EDT
That’s a photo from an actual Serie A match between Lazio and Atalanta. Wow.
Mar 9, 2014, 5:07 PM EDT
Wilmer Cabrera gets a win in his debut as boss of Chivas USA.
Mar 9, 2014, 4:44 PM EDT
This Johannsson kid is easily the best Icelandic-Alabaman we’ve seen in a long time.
Mar 9, 2014, 4:01 PM EDT
Meyler capped off a long run with a left-footed finish to score the second of Hull’s three goals in a shutout win over Sunderland on Sunday.
Mar 9, 2014, 3:26 PM EDT
It’s a horrifying story, and one that is sure to have severe repercussions throughout Ghana’s soccer structure.
Mar 9, 2014, 2:59 PM EDT
With Pique picking up his fourth yellow against Real Valladolid, he could sit next league match to ensure his availability against Real Madrid.
Mar 9, 2014, 2:05 PM EDT
At least one of Wigan, Hull City or Sheffield United will make the FA Cup final as the quarterfinals are complete and the semifinal draw is out.
Mar 9, 2014, 1:37 PM EDT
In the midst of a 4-match winless skid in the Bundesliga – 5 if you include the Champions League drubbing by PSG – Bayer Leverkusen now lose a key midfield component.
Mar 9, 2014, 11:54 AM EDT
An offshore Swiss bank account has betrayed the 62-year-old as he faces 10 years in prison.
Mar 9, 2014, 10:23 AM EDT
Jozy Altidore was left out of the Sunderland squad today thanks to a knock he picked up in training, but this season as a whole has been a train wreck.
Mar 9, 2014, 9:26 AM EDT
According to the player’s agent and brother, an English club – and possibly multiple – made a large offer for the defender, but he is happy at Real Madrid.
Mar 9, 2014, 8:53 AM EDT
Because there’s still hope for humanity, a player convinces the referee he wasn’t taken down in the box and that a penalty shouldn’t be awarded
Mar 9, 2014, 7:34 AM EDT
Two goals from players in their Major League Soccer debuts crack our first Top 5 list.
Mar 9, 2014, 7:02 AM EDT
Will Bruin, Federico Higuaín, and Kenny Miller each scored two goals as a cagey start transformed into fireworks.
Gastón Fernández pays immediate dividends for Portland, but don’t overlook a strong night from Philadelphia
Mar 9, 2014, 6:10 AM EDT
“La Gata’s” late heroics can’t overshadow a strong start for the new-look Union.
Mar 9, 2014, 5:25 AM EDT
MLS’s best forward had a very non-best night on Saturday, with his inability to convert a late penalty kick costing his team in Carson.
Mar 9, 2014, 4:02 AM EDT
The former Canadian international drew a late penalty in the Galaxy’s loss to RSL.
Mar 9, 2014, 12:18 AM EDT
Holding serve was enough in game one under their new coach, with Dallas’s big three threat delivering against the Impact.
Mar 8, 2014, 10:18 PM EDT
They finished last year at opposite ends of the East. On Saturday, D.C. and New York both stumbled in their 2014 openers.
Mar 8, 2014, 9:34 PM EDT
After a downturn in 2013, Houston’s main attacking threat has already bagged two.
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