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Sunderland 2 v 1 Ipswich Town
SkyBet League One
Tuesday, 3rd November 2020 Kick-off 19:00
Sunderland 2-1 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Tuesday, 3rd Nov 2020 21:37

Andre Dozzell was controversially red-carded as the Blues were beaten 2-1 at Sunderland, former Blues skipper Grant Leadbitter winning the game with a late penalty. The Black Cats took the lead on eight via Charlie Wyke but Jack Lankester levelled for Town seven minutes before the break and the Blues were on top on the second half until Dozzell was harshly dismissed for a 72nd-minute challenge on Leadbitter, who netted the winner from the spot 12 minutes later after Mark McGuinness had handled.

Jack Lankester’s first goal of the season seven minutes before the break sees the Blues and Sunderland locked at 1-1 at the break, Charlie Wyke having given the Black Cats the lead in the eighth minute.

Striker Kayden Jackson made his first start of the season and Toto Nsiala and Lankester returned to the Town team.

Jackson took over as the lone central striker from Oli Hawkins, who dropped to the bench, while Nsiala was back at the heart of the defence with Luke Woolfenden absent as he is self-isolating for a minimum of 14 days having come in close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19.

Lankester came into the advanced midfield role with Alan Judge moving out to the right of the front three, Gwion Edwards to the left, with Freddie Sears among the subs.

The Black Cats made one change from the team which won 2-0 at Gillingham at the weekend with Chris Maguire replacing Aiden O’Brien, who was on the bench, while ex-Blues skipper Grant Leadbitter started in their midfield.

After kick-off had been delayed for half an hour due to technical issues relating to the online streaming broadcast, the home side went ahead via the game’s first serious attack in the ninth minute.

Lynden Gooch played a low pass into the area for Wyke, Mark McGuinness slipping and allowing it to reach the striker, who confidently beat Tomas Holy with Stephen Ward unable to get across to tackle and claiming offside, perhaps with good reason.

The Black Cats continued to have the better of it and in the 19th minute Denver Hume crossed from the left and Josh Scowen headed over.

The Blues were struggling to get going. They were seeing a lot of the ball but were passing it around in their own half for the most part, and not always comfortably with the Wearsiders keenly pressing from the front.

In the 23rd minute Teddy Bishop was upended not far outside the Sunderland box but Andre Dozzell’s free-kick was hit straight into the wall, Scowen requiring treatment, the ball having hit him in the face.

Just before the half hour, Conor McLaughlin crossed from the right and Wyke headed high and wide.

Town had shown little sign of levelling - and equally Sunderland hadn’t gone close to adding a second - but in the 38th minute they got on terms via a superb second career goal from Lankester.

Edwards burst past his man on the left and cut it back to the academy product who took a touch and hit a well-struck shot across the previously untested Lee Burge and into the net off the inside of the far post.

Lankester’s excellent goal, his first since opening his career account against Millwall at Portman Road in January 2019, seemed to wake up the previously soporific Blues, who began to push for a second.

On 41, following a corner which had been cleared, Chambers found Edwards with a terrific cross-field ball. The Welshman sent over a potentially dangerous cross but a Wearsiders’ boot cleared.

In injury time, Jackson almost embarrassed Hume on the byline on the right, robbing him of the ball before trying to pick out Lankester in the middle. However, the ball bounced off a defender to Burge.

That was the final action of a half in which the Blues had been second best for the most part, although Sunderland had created little aside from their goal which owed much to McGuinness’s error.

Town seemed to wake up in the minutes after their goal which was cleverly created by Edwards and clinically finished by Lankester.

The Black Cats swapped Scowen for Max Power ahead of the second half with the Blues unchanged.

The home side gave the ball away in their own half of the field twice in the opening couple of minutes, first to Edwards who was quickly dispossessed, then to Chambers, who crossed low for Lankester, who looked to be tripped by Wearsiders’ skipper Bailey Wright. However, Town protests were muted and referee Peter Wright showed no interest.

As the game approached the hour mark, Maguire sent over a corner from the left and Tom Flanagan rose highest but flicked over the bar.

Lankester went within a few inches of netting his second of the game in the 63rd minute. Judge picked up a loose ball on the Town right and sent over a cross which Jackson allowed to reach Lankester, who took it down on his chest when under pressure but was unable to keep his shot down and the ball flew just over the bar.

On 68 Sunderland, who had been very much under par since the break, swapped Maguire for Danny Graham.

As in the first half chances were hardly a frequent occurrence but the Blues were having the better of it on balance with Sunderland forced to give away numerous free-kicks when Bishop and Edwards were breaking, surprisingly with referee Wright keeping his yellow card in his pocket.

And when a card finally came in the 72nd minute it was red, and it was shown to Town’s Andre Dozzell.

The midfielder had been trying to twist and turn out of a tight area in the centre circle and he and Leadbitter both slid for the loose ball, Dozzell catching the former Blues skipper as they did so. A yellow card looked the most likely outcome but referee Wright evidently adjudged that Dozzell had gone in recklessly with his studs high and issued a red card, the first of the former England U20 international’s senior career.

It looked a very harsh decision and the Town players argued vehemently with the official but to no avail and they were forced to play the final 17 minutes with 10 men.

Two minutes following the dismissal, shortly after Luke O’Nien had shot wide for the Wearsiders, Hawkins replaced Jackson.

Wyke hit an effort well over for the Black Cats, who were still to trouble Holy aside from the goal, before Leadbitter finally became the first Sunderland player to be shown a yellow card in the 78th minute for a foul on Bishop. Hume joined him on 81 for tripping Lankester.

Three minutes later, the Wearsiders were awarded the penalty which would win them the game when McGuinness cleared the ball against his own hand and then his face.

Referee Wright pointed straight to the spot. Again it looked a very tough decision on the Blues and there were no Sunderland appeals, even if it may perhaps have been warranted under the current interpretation of the laws. Leadbitter confidently slammed the ball past Holy to make it 2-1.

Town were forced to commit more men forward and it might have been 3-1 in the 87th minute when sub Graham knocked it down for Wyke, who somehow put it over the top from eight yards.

Keanan Bennetts replaced Lankester for the final scheduled minute and the Blues forced a couple of corners but without being able to create a chance before referee Wright confirmed their defeat.

The result was harsh on the Blues who had started the game poorly but having got their equaliser were the better side in the second half and might well have gone in front when Lankester shot just over the bar.

If the red card was harsh, the penalty was unfortunate for McGuinness, who had been at fault for the Black Cats’ first goal, and tough on Town who deserved to take something from the match.

The Blues, who are still to beat anyone in the top 11 in the table, stay second, three points behind leaders Peterborough, and ahead of Charlton in third and Lincoln in fourth on goal difference.

Sunderland: Burge, McLaughlin, Wright (c), Flanagan, O’Nien, Scowen (Power 46), Leadbitter, Gooch (Sanderson 90), Hume, Maguire (Graham 68), Wyke. Unused: Matthews, O’Brien, Grigg, Diamond.

Town: Holy, Chambers (c), Nsiala, McGuinness, Ward, Dozzell, Bishop, Judge, Lankester (Bennetts 89), Edwards, Jackson (Hawkins 76). Unused: Cornell, Wilson, Kenlock, Huws. Referee: Peter Wright (Merseyside).

Photo: Action Images

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fallguy1234 added 21:38 - Nov 3
I completely understand that the referee ruined this game tonight. However, are we going to continue losing every tough game we have all season? This might be a unpopular opinion but I care about my club, THE TEAM ARE SOFT. It feels like we have a losing mentality against these teams. Losing tonight is just ridiculously predictable and I’m sure everyone will agree. Roll your sleeves up and go at them. We’re in the top 6 but if this carries on then the same as last year will happen. Something needs freshening up and like I’ve been saying for the last year, this manager is not the man to get us out of league one. Also, I hate leadbitter

BromleyBloo added 21:38 - Nov 3
Well the first half was a game of two halves. Poor goal to give away - what were our central defenders doing - and then boringly predictable like an accident waiting to happen. So fragile, ponderous and slow in everything we did and every time Nsiala got the ball bizarrely I was begging for him or Holy to go long ASAP and not make a mistake! But then we got a goal totally out of the Blue - brilliant by Edwards to set up and brilliant finish from Lanks - and suddenly we started playing and we finished the half the better team and deservedly level. Sunderland not that good, first 30 mins we were just making them look that way and Holy didn’t have a save to make apart from the goal.

We started the second half as we should’ve the first - somebody at half-time had actually mentioned pressure and closing down - and we quickly became the better side, with Lanks having a great chance to score a second. Then enter the referee who’d not given a yellow in spite of many strong challenges and Dozza gets a straight red - unbelievable!!! And then the penalty - even more unbelievable!!!

Lanks very good, Edwards, Bish and Dozz also all good along with a solid defence, including Nsiala, apart from the first goal and Jackson put in a solid shift. A good fighting performance right to the end and up to the sending off we were going to win!!! Referee a total muppet - absolute disgrace!!! We were robbed!!!

KernowBluey added 21:40 - Nov 3
All I have to say is this
Ipswich 1 The Ref 2

cat added 21:40 - Nov 3
Throughly undeserved defeat, Ref’s a fecking cant! Feel for the team as nothing can legislate for that. Better team lost. Move on.

TimmyH added 21:41 - Nov 3
I'm not one for moaning at referee decisions but even the penalty decision must have been accidental handball, both players jumped at the same time and headed on to Nsiala (I think) who wasn't even looking at the ball!

Sunderland never deserved the win and as before the game said they were ordinary and tonight they showed it, we just need to create more chances. Lucky against Crewe at the weekend and certainly unlucky tonight!

Tractorboy58 added 21:43 - Nov 3
We have shown that we can be up there all season ..we outplayed them for 80% of the game..on to the next one COYB !

blue86 added 21:43 - Nov 3
Frustrating, we didnt deserve to lose. But again there is no hiding from it, we havent beat a top 8 side. Penalty was baffling would like to see that again, bishop was a joy to watch at times. Dont want to be to negative, as we played ok and scored a decent goal, but these are the games we NEED to win to get out of this league.

dreblue added 21:43 - Nov 3
fallguy1234 - did you even watch the game? I get that your comment was a generic one based on playing a “top 6 side”, however, tonight we def deserved to win and I strongly believe we would have done if it wasn’t for the ref! Granted to once again made some stupid mistakes but even with them we looked like the team that would go on to win.

unknown100 added 21:45 - Nov 3
@fallguy- clearly didn’t watch the game and if you did and still draw that conclusion you should give up watching football

Excellent performance, so disappointed the ref ruined the game

Counagoal added 21:45 - Nov 3
One of the first times I’ve came away from a game this season not annoyed about the way in which we have played but fuming with the standard of refereeing. Firstly the red card is outrageous, never a red. Also Sunderland completed about 15 fouls prior to this without recieving a single yellow. To make matters worse he gives the a penalty for a handball in which McGuiness could do nothing about albeit poor communication between our two centre backs. To top things off I’ve heard that their first goal could have been offside and thought we could have had a penalty with a loose challenge on Lankester. Absolutely gutted.

itfchorry added 21:46 - Nov 3
Hang your head in shame Ref -

School Boy Refereeing-

Dolphinblue added 21:47 - Nov 3
Very difficult to win any game with ref decisions like that....town clearly on top looking like going on to win.....must get out of this league if only to avoid these refs 😥

Otesus added 21:48 - Nov 3
I was critical of Lamberts philosophy of pass left, right, backwards and then to the keeper - only playing in 2/3rds of the pitch (middle and our defensive). But in the second half, we were slightly on more on the the front foot and made Sunderland uncomfortable. But never really threatened to score, other than Lanks effort. Even after, what appeared a harsh decision of Andre’s red card ...... we still looked able to see the game out. Step up the Referee and give the most ludicrous penalty EVER!! And the best of it ...... he just walks away and doesn’t stand accountable for his actions.

Town didn’t deserve to lose or win this game. And decision slowly don’t level themselves out.

VanDusen added 21:49 - Nov 3
Disgrace. The ref just picked up.his envelope of used tenners in the pub round the corner presumably.

TimmyH added 21:49 - Nov 3
Peter Wright - Wiki says he comes from Merseyside and scousers do like to think of themselves as some of the funniest people in the country and it has to be said his refereeing tonight was certainly comical.

itfchorry added 21:49 - Nov 3
Spot on Counsgoal -

Even my Mackham mate is embarrassed!

Bergholt_Blue added 21:50 - Nov 3
Absolutely robbed never a red card or a penalty the refs in this league are awful

SickParrot added 21:50 - Nov 3
Sunderland may have needed the help of the ref but when we play the better sides we always find a way to lose.

fallguy1234 added 21:51 - Nov 3
At the end of the day say what you want- just don’t start moaning when we finish mid table and I don’t want to hear you saying lambert out. If you knew anything about football you would know lambert is a clown. Relegated us and then finished 12th in league 1. If you’re happy with that, that’s fine

budgieplucker added 21:53 - Nov 3
Frustrating that we have been very harshly treated tonight.

Can’t really blame young Jack for missing that second chance that bounced up and very difficult to control. Judge has missed loads like that.

Andre, I am a massive fan and thing he has done really well overall this season, however, in all honesty he has had several clumsy challenges this year, he is half a yard too slow and always likely to be drawn into challenges like that !!!

Some real positives Jack Lankester, stand out performance from the Tedster who is now pushing on and different class. Well done Toto pleased you have got your game back on track. Young McGuinness could be a real colossus.

Now the realities:- We are nowhere good enough in the striking department, Jackson obviously recovering from COVID but his touch is so poor. We are so so crap from set pieces and need to do much much better, no threat whatsoever. Apart from the goal we never tested their goalkeeper.

Yes on possession we looked the better side tonight but teams like Sunderland and Peterborough will end up scoring more goals than us and score all types of goals, others have far more cutting edge and we just don’t have enough about us to grind out results against the top six.

We can only hope that we can see more good young players come through as our rewards to what is likely to be another season where we are just not capable of winning the important matches

DifferentGravy added 21:53 - Nov 3
I dont agree we def deserved to win. We controllled the ball for long spells....in our own half. We didnt look unduly troubled for long periods of the game. But we only created two goalscoring chances. A draw was a fair result but the ref was an absolute disgrace and clearly had other ideas. Players were rolling around all over the place and he gave free kicks every time someone cried 'aarrgghh'. I couldnt see the sending off very well but it seemed incredibly harsh to me. The penalty was a joke and if i had been playing i would definitely have been the second town players sent off. Some moments of skill(Edwards/Bishop) ,some good performances and yet again a tremendous work rate.....BUT we cant keep trying to eek out a win with only a couple of shots .....got to have more of an attacking threat

cat added 21:55 - Nov 3
Nothing to do with not beating a top 6 side tonight, total bollox on this occasion.

lonelyblue added 21:55 - Nov 3
We weren’t brilliant but the manager and the players worked out how to play against this team. I could question a couple of the selections and a couple of the performances, but we really played as a team, and I do hope, if we don’t get promoted this year, y’all don’t moan endlessly. This performance tonight was like early Burley. Not perfect, but there’s a plan there.

Norwichbeater added 21:58 - Nov 3
I don’t often comment, however that standard of refereeing is a disgrace. Could a ref be that bad or did he have a bet on? I would presume he is just a appalling or he had a really bad night. Even so what are the other officials doing to not flag blatant errors. I got so angry watching that as Sunderland looked poor after our goal and we looked good. Can’t blame lambert or Evans for that tonight.just disgraceful refereeing. If any of us were that bad at our jobs we wouldn’t be employed for very long. I hope he has a sleepless night or 2. Roll on to next game. In fairness we never deserved 6 points from the last 2 games so I suppose that was payback. Just a shame that it was against promotion rivals. Ref a cxxt

Saxonblue74 added 22:00 - Nov 3
Can't believe that! Fallguy has actually managed to annoy me more than the Ref! That is an absolutely RIDICULOUS post!

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