Sunderland v Man Utd: Three wins in a row and that Clive Walker hat-trick

Clive Walker scores from the spot

Clive Walker scores from the spot

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Sunderland’s home league record against Manchester United in recent years does not make pretty reading.

It’s 14 games since the last win, with Sunderland taking a measly four points from the last 13 league encounters on Wearside.

Sunderland's 1984/5 squad picture

Sunderland's 1984/5 squad picture

Oddly, Sunderland won three in a row before that.

In March, 1997, Peter Reid’s Rokermen came ount on top 2-1 in front of 22,225 fans.

Michael Gray and John Mullin made it 2-0 before an Andy Melville own goal on 78 minutes brought United back into it.

Sunderland held on though to climb to 15th in the table.

In an exciting finale, Gary Bennett scored on 89 minutes to win the points.

Sunderland: Perez, Hall, Kubicki, Bracewell (Williams 84), Ord, Melville, Gray, Ball, Mullin, Bridges (Russell 74), Kelly. Subs not used: Preece, Howey, Eriksson.

Man Utd: Schmeichel, G Neville, Irwin, P Neville, May, Johnsen, Beckham, Poborsky (Solksjaer 57)., Cantona, McClair, Cruyff (Cole 57). Subs not used: Van der Gouw, Casper, Giggs.

Going back, Sunderland’s absence from the top flight prevented any visits from the Red Devils for several years.

The one before was in September 1990, and the score was again 2-1 to the Rokermen.

Gary Owers had Sunderland ahead on 23 minutes but Brian McClair levelled on 70 minutes.

In an exciting finale, Gary Bennett scored on 89 minutes to win the points.

Sunderland: Norman, Kay, Agboola, Bracewell (Brady 75), Bennett, Ball, Owers, Hardyman, Davenport, Gabbiadini (Hauser 82), Armstrong.

Man Utd: Sealey, Irwin, Donaghy (Beardsmore 67), Phelan, Pallister, Bruce, Webb, Ince, McClair, Hughes (Robins 61), Blackmore.

Again, before this game there were a number of years when Sunderland did not face United due to playing below the to flight.

But the clash between the teams on November 24, 1984 was memorable - with five first-half goals, two men sent off, and a Sunderland hat-trick!

Bryan Robson had Ron Atkinson’s United ahead on 13 minutes and two minutes later Mark Hughes made it 2-0.

Almost immediately, Sunderland were back in it thanks to Clive Walker, who raced onto a Colin West flick to fire past keeper Gary Bailey.

Before the match had even reached 20 minutes, both sides were reduced to 10 men as Hughes and David Hodgson clashed and were sent for an early bath.

The half ended in more drama. On 42 minutes, Sunderland levelled after Gary Bennett was brought down by Bailey, and Walker scored from the resulting penalty.

Two minutes later, Stan Cummins burst through and was brought down by Gordon McQueen - and Walker again fired into the corner from the spot to put the Rokermen ahead.

Sunderland held the lead to the end to claim the points - but the season did not end well with relegation from the top flight.

And Walker’s penalty success did not last - he missed a spot-kick at Wembley as Sunderland lost the Milk Cup final 1-0 to Norwich.