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Brighton & Hove Albion
West Bromwich Albion
West Ham United
May 7, 2014
• Stadium of Light, Sunderland
Referee: L. Mason
• Attendance: 45181
J. Colback 13'
F. Borini 31'
West Bromwich Albion
That's all for tonight, I've been Greg Taylor, thanks for being with us.
West Brom were simply woeful tonight. They didn't get going at all and failed to test Mannone all evening. Their fans won't mind though, they're also staying up thanks to their superior goal difference compared with Norwich.
Sunderland have survived with a game to spare. They've won four successive Premier League matches for the first time since December 2000 and in doing so, will be back in the Premier League next season. Goals from Colback and Borini were enough to seal a 2-0 win and move up to 15th in the league table.
90' + 2'
The home fans are on their feet as they prepare to celebrate.
Sunderland have almost done it. Just three minutes of added time left before they can celebrate staying in the Premier League.
Cattermole is unable to continue and is given a standing ovation as he leaves the field. He has been a huge driving force behind their recent run of form.
Cattermole finds himself in unchartered territory and has a shot from the edge of the box. It's a poor effort and he goes down injured after falling awkwardly. He should be fine but has gone off as a precaution.
Altidore gets the home fans singing again with a bustling run past three players, he only has McAuley to beat but it's one man too many and Lugano brings the ball out from the back.
West Brom have a free kick on the edge of the Sunderland area. Brunt stands over it and takes it but the wall does its job and Sunderland win the ball back.
West Brom's summer signing Matej Vydra replaces Saido Berahino. Can the ex-Watford man grab a goal or two to pull his side level?
At the other end of the table, in tonight's other match, Manchester City lead Aston Villa 2-0 thanks to two goals in eight minutes from Edin Dzeko. Surely they've got the league in the bag now?
I wonder if any Norwich fans are still dreaming of a Baggies comeback? As we enter the final 15 minutes, I'd advise them to start praying for a miracle.
FACT: The Baggies have drawn the most Premier League games this season (15), but their last away league draw was back in December.
Sunderland seem content with sitting deep and countering. West Brom really have looked clueless this evening and continue to frustrate.
CLOSE! Sunderland should have added to their lead. Brilliant play by Larsson who switches it out wide to Vergini. The full back strides into the box and has time to place the ball but drags his shot wide.
West Brom seem to be running out of ideas. They have been camped in the Sunderland half but can't find a way through. Dawson has just had a pot shot from 30 yards and it's high and wide.
WHAT A MISS! Altidore has just come on and he's just missed an absolute sitter. Alonso delivers a low ball into the back post for the big American, but he fluffs his cue and pokes his effort wide.
CLOSE! Best chance of the game for West Brom and it falls to former Sunderland man Sessegnon. He's allowed to run into the box and past Brown before scuffing his shot just wide of Mannone's left post. He should have hit the target there.
West Brom continue to push the hosts back but Mulumbu's weak effort fails to test Mannone as he comfortably saves the shot.
The crowd are getting a little frustrated. West Brom are at long last seeing a lot more the ball but are yet to hurt Sunderland. It looks like the Black Cats are playing on the break now which is allowing the Baggies to come on to them.
CHANCE! Mulumbu plays a lovely reverse pass into Berahino who curls a cross into the back post. But Anichebe can't quite get a decisive touch. That is by far the best bit of play by the away side tonight.
STAT ATTACK: Sunderland have taken more points from their last three league games (nine) than in the previous 11 (eight).
Good play by Sessegnon, he skips past two defenders down the right and delivers a fine ball into the near post but Anichebe's control lets him down and Brown gets it clear.
The Baggies have started well this half, there's a bit more intent but it's been a scrappy few minutes. Right now it has the feel of a pre season friendly.
Quiet start to the half with neither side creating anything meaningful. Dawson has just played a brilliant ball in from the right wing but Anichebe fails to attack it and Sunderland have a throw.
West Brom have made two changes at the break to try and turn this game around. Dawson has replaced Reid at right back while Mulumbu has come of for Jacob in central midfield.
West Brom kick off looking to improve on a poor diplay in the first half.
The players are back out on the pitch so we'll be underway shortly.
Sunderland look destined to stay up now at the expense of Norwich. The Canaries must still be hoping for a Baggies comeback in the second half but it looks unlikely.
HALFTIME: Sunderland thoroughly deserve their 2-0 lead thanks to goals by Colback and Borini. The first was a neat finish and the second was a brilliant exchange between Borini and Larsson to put some gloss on the first half. West Brom just haven't been at the races and look a side already on their holidays.
45' + 2'
Sunderland win a corner after Alonso's cross is blocked, Johnson whips it in but it's cleared and that's the last bit of action this half.
There will be two minutes of added time.
West Brom showing a bit of frustration with Dorrans tripping Alonso on the far side. They have been really poor this half, Mel will have a job on his hands to motivate them for the second half.
Back under way and Sunderland win a corner after Johnson nips in behind only for Lugano to tackle him. The delivery is poor though and West Brom bring it out from the back.
West Brom really have offered very little going forward and O'Shea and Brown have been largely untroubled. Play has stopped with Borini down being treated for a head injury.
The home fans can relax a little now with their side 2-0 up. But sadly, for Norwich fans, it looks almost certain they'll be watching their side in the Championship next season.
Sunderland keep plugging away and Alonso, who has had a great game so far, delivers another teasing ball into the box which Brunt has to head out for a corner. Johnson whips it in but Foster rises above the crowd of players to catch the ball.
Assist Sebastian Larsson
Goal Fabio Borini
GOAL! Brilliant, brilliant goal and it's their little gem Borini who has scored it. Borini passes the ball into Larsson 30 yards out, the Liverpool loanee continues his run into the box and is picked out by the Swede, the Italian times his run perfectly and deftly flicks the ball past Foster to double his side's lead.
As we approach the half hour mark Sunderland have just lost their way a bit. Poyet is now up barking orders at his players, he knows they can't afford to switch off.
STAT ATTACK: West Brom are yet to have yet to have a player sent off this season; Sunderland lead the Premier League with seven.
CLOSE! Wickham gets his first sighter of the evening as Colback lays the ball off to him on the right hand side of the box, the forward takes a touch and then tries to curl it inside the far post but his effort has too much on it and goes well over.
Great counter by Sunderland with Johnson driving into the box but Reid is there to make a crucial block and stop the winger unleashing a shot. The ex Man City winger is coming inside a lot but looks more effective when out wide.
The game has gone a little flat but there's still a great atmosphere in the stadium. The fans really getting behind their side. Another passing move by West Brom is broken down by Cattermole and the away side have a throw.
The stats highlight Sunderand's dominance in the opening 20 minutes, with them having 61 per cent of possession and West Brom yet to muster an attempt on goal.
West Brom haven't really got going yet and are under real pressure again. Sunderland look a side full of confidence and continue to attack with Alonso providing great width on the left hand side.
If it stays like this Sunderland will not only definitely stay up but they'll leapfrog West Borm and Hull in the league table to 15th. What a run they're on.
Assist Marcos Alonso
Goal Jack Colback
GOAL! Sunderland lead and it's Colback who fires his side ahead. Alonso delivers a low cross into the penalty area and Colback hits it first time into the roof of the net. No chance for Foster.
Borini finds Wickham in space on the right, the young forward skips past Brunt and delivers a dangerous cross towards the near post but no one is there to get a touch and West Brom retrieve possession.
Borini does really well to hold off Reid but he's eventually brought down by the West Brom man and Sunderland have a free kick from 25 yards out. Larsson floats it in but McAuley nods it out to safety.
GREAT SAVE! Patient build up play by the home side, Alonso spots Borini on the edge of the box who looks up and strikes from distance but Foster leaps to his right and tips it out for a corner.
The West Brom midfield have seen plenty of the ball too, Morrison and Jacob have had time to look up and play but so far nothing dangerous has been created.
Sunderland looking bright in the opening exchanges with Borini playing a perfect cross field ball to Johnson who brings it down and tries to get another cross in but it's too near Foster who claims the ball.
Great ball in behind by Cattermole towards Johnson on the right, the winger gets to it but he can't control his cross and West Brom have a goal kick.
Sunderland kick off in their familar red and white home strip and look to get the point they need to stay in the top tier.
The players have just strolled out onto the pitch, so we'll be underway shortly.
However, Baggies boss Pepe Mel makes five changes to the team which lost to Arsenal on Sunday with Victor Anichebe and Saido Berahino recalled in attack and Claudio Yacob returning in midfield.
So Poyet names an unchanged side from the win at Old Trafford with Sebastian Larsson and Adam Johnson playing out wide and Fabio Borini supporting April's player of the month, Connor Wickham.
SUBSTITUTES: Myhill, Dawson, Sinclair, Vydra, Mulumbu, Olsson, O'Neil
WEST BROM: Foster, Reid, McAuley, Lugano, Brunt, Berahino, Yacob, Morrison, Dorrans, Sessegnon, Anichebe
SUBSTITUTES: Bardsley, Altidore, Ba, Giaccherini, Bridcutt, Scocco, Ustari
SUNDERLAND: Mannone, Vergini, Alonso, Brown, O'Shea, Cattermole, Colback, Larsson, Johnson, Borini, Wickham
Before we go any further, let's have a look at how both sides are lining up, starting with the home side.
That victory was the Baggies' first of the season and since then they've only mangaged six more which explains why they've spent so much of the season hovering above the drop themselves.
If Sunderland do secure their top division status against West Brom tonight, there will be a sense of irony as it was a 3-0 defeat at the Hawthorns back in September that resulted in Paolo Di Canio getting the sack.
Their climb up the table has much to do with the return and form of Connor Wickham. The young forward has scored five and assisted one in his last four Premier League games. He'll be looking for another goal tonight and a win for his manager, Gus Poyet, to guarantee the club's Premier League safety.
What a turnaround for Sunderland. Following their home loss to Everton on 12 April they were seven points adrift of safety with only six games to play. Now with two games to play they are two points clear of the drop having gone on a remarkable run including away wins at Chelsea and Man Utd.
Hello and welcome to this evening's LIVE play-by-play commentary of the Premier League as Sunderland host West Brom here at the Stadium of Light. My name is Greg Taylor and I'll be guiding you through all the action.
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