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Played
March 30, 2013 6:15 PM IST
Stadium of Light — Sunderland
Referee:‬ K. Friend‎
Attendance:‬ 43760‎
 
 
Titus Bramble 27′ (OG)
   
 
 

Player Ratings: Sunderland 0-1 Manchester United

The Red Devils kept their title charge going thanks to Titus Bramble's own-goal at the stadium where they saw the crown slip out of their hands on the final day of last season

By Matt Scott at the Stadium of Light

  • Simon Mignolet
    5
    2
    3.00

    Simon Mignolet

    Kept United at bay with a number of smart saves, particularly from Buttner, but could do nothing as Van Persie's whipped cross deflected off Bramble and past him. Kept the score respectable with further saves from the Dutch pair.

  • Phil Bardsley
    0
    8
    1.50

    Phil Bardsley

    Playing just his third league game of 2013, the ex-United man was targeted throughout by his former club and struggled against Young and Buttner, particularly with most of the visitor's good openings coming from his flank.

  • Danny Rose
    2
    3
    2.50

    Danny Rose

    Rarely troubled by Valencia for the most part and supported McClean where possible, but couldn't quite influence things from the left wing as he often does for the Black Cats.

  • John O'Shea
    3
    5
    3.00

    John O'Shea

    Had a job on his hands in the first half to keep the Sunderland defence together as United swarmed forward in the hunt for goals. Looked calm and composed after the break as the hosts got more into the game and kept Van Persie from causing further damage.

  • Titus Bramble
    2
    5
    2.00

    Titus Bramble

    Clumsily thrashed at Van Persie's cross to score the only goal of the game at the wrong end and almost repeated the trick from a Buttner cross in the second half. Out-muscled United attackers on occasion, but often had O'Shea to thank for mopping up after him.

  • Alfred N'diaye
    1
    4
    3.00

    Alfred N'diaye

    Quickly moved to an anchoring role to keep Kagawa quiet and the switch worked to a certain extent. Although United scored, they struggled to create much afterwards, with the towering Senegalese man stopping a lot.

  • Craig Gardner
    2
    3
    3.00

    Craig Gardner

    Tried to keep Carrick occupied, regularly snapping into the England man while on the ball, while also looking to prompt his own side's attacks, although much of his distribution was sideways.

  • Adam Johnson
    4
    7
    1.00

    Adam Johnson Flop of the Match

    Couldn't threaten from either flank much as he struggled to take on his man with any real conviction but delivered a couple of dangerous in-swinging corners from the right. Ultimately a hugely frustrating afternoon and he was replaced by Wickham with 15 to go.

  • James McClean
    1
    7
    1.50

    James McClean

    Chased back in a committed manner but completely let himself down in attack. Too often looked to beat a man more than once, running into blind alleys and losing impetus.

  • Stéphane Sessegnon
    0
    8
    1.00

    Stéphane Sessegnon

    The Benin man had a shocker, constantly looking to dribble through United, while his passing was largely atrocious. Failed to track back when positioned on the right wing, much to the annoyance of several colleagues.

  • Danny Graham
    1
    3
    2.00

    Danny Graham

    Toiled up front and closed down the United defence where he could but found himself isolated for much of the game and could not offer much in an attacking sense.

Substitutions

  • Sebastian Larsson
    2
    3

    Sebastian Larsson

    Replaced Bardsley, moving Gardner to right-back, but could not make anything happen as the hosts chased a goal.

  • Jack Colback
    0
    5

    Jack Colback

    Came on for Rose late in the game.

  • Connor Wickham
    2
    3

    Connor Wickham

    Added a presence in attack after coming on for Johnson, but his touch let him down with one opportunbity inside the box.

  • David de Gea
    30
    3
    3.00

    David de Gea

    Scuffed an early clearance straight to Graham, but had absolutely nothing else to do in the first half. Was tested slightly more after the break and proved many critics wrong by dealing magnificently with a string of crosses and high balls.

  • Rafael
    17
    4
    2.50

    Rafael

    Kept McClean fairly quiet on the left, but was forced off in the 32nd minute with a groin injury and was replaced by Jonny Evans with Smalling switching to right-back.

  • Chris Smalling
    27
    2
    3.00

    Chris Smalling

    Started alongside captain Vidic before moving to the right after Rafael's withdrawal and showed no signs of fatigue, despite playing twice for England in the international break.

  • Nemanja Vidic
    28
    2
    2.50

    Nemanja Vidic

    Pulled up with an apparent injury in just the second minute, but shook it off comfortably enough to turn in a fine performance despite Graham constantly nipping around him.

  • Alexander Büttner
    32
    3
    3.00

    Alexander Büttner

    Bombed on down the left incessantly and stumbled into a one-on-one opening in the 12th minute, although Mignolet was out quickly to smother. Kept an eye on his defensive duties too, working back to quell Johnson and Sessegnon.

  • Antonio Valencia
    14
    18
    2.00

    Antonio Valencia

    Worked up and down the right wing, ensuring the threat of McClean was kept to a minimum, but could rarely get the better of Rose at the other end as his fairly mediocre campaign meanders on.

  • Michael Carrick
    47
    4
    4.00

    Michael Carrick Top of the Match

    Recycled the ball excellently throughout and was the launch-pad for all of United's good play in the first half. Had to show the opposite side of his game after the break and excelled there too, tackling well, while heading away a number of corners and crosses.

  • Anderson
    18
    11
    3.00

    Anderson

    Put in a good shift alongside Carrick, closing down the Sunderland midfield and ensuring there was little space to manoeuvre around the edge of the area. Withdrawn for Cleverley late on.

  • Ashley Young
    15
    16
    2.50

    Ashley Young

    Combined with Buttner well on the left, but could not provide a sustained threat over the 90 minutes, often letting the Dutchman charge past him and take up the attacking mantle.

  • Robin van Persie
    28
    15
    2.50

    Robin van Persie

    Utilised in a slightly more supportive role than usual, holding the ball up and bringing team-mates into play but forced the opening goal as he teased Bardsley before firing the ball across goal with Bramble haplessly turning into his own net.

  • Shinji Kagawa
    51
    2
    3.50

    Shinji Kagawa

    Linked the visitors' attacks together magnificently in the first half, despite being shadowed by N'Diaye, dropping into pockets of space and dinking clever balls to his team-mates. Faded slightly after the break and was replaced by Welbeck.

Substitutions

  • Jonny Evans
    27
    0
    3.00

    Jonny Evans

    Slotted into the back four after Rafael picked up an injury and performed well alongside Vidic in the face of a late onslaught from the hosts.

  • Tom Cleverley
    19
    0

    Tom Cleverley

    A late replacement for Anderson in midfield.

  • Danny Welbeck
    17
    6

    Danny Welbeck

    Came on for the tired Kagawa for the last 10 minutes, but barely touched the ball.

Results
 
Player Ratings
Tournament
Position
Ranking
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
29 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Manchester City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man. United
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
15 0