Montpellier 1 Sunderland 1: Need for new signings clear as injuries mount in front of watching Ellis Short

Ellis Short was watching on as Sunderland drew 1-1 with Montpellier HSC - but victory came at a cost after Jan Kirchhoff and Billy Jones limped off.

Saturday, 30th July 2016, 6:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 3:21 pm
Fabio Borini scores

It was the first time the Sunderland owner had seen David Moyes take charge of a game since naming him as Sam Allardcye's replacement last weekend.

And the need for reinforcements won't have been lost on him after seeing Kirchhoff and Jones subbed within five minutes of each other in the first half.

Sunderland's squad was already threadbare and in desperate need of reinforcements with the Premier League season just two weeks away, injuries won't help Moyes' options.

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Moyes named the strongest side available to him with Jermain Defoe (thigh strain), Patrick van Aanholt (groin) and Jack Rodwell (dead leg) all missing the game.

Defoe has already been ruled out for the rest of the pre-season programme, with van Aanholt and Rodwell - who had a bandage on his right calf - not risked tonight.

The trio joined Short in the only stand at the Stade Jaques Forestier.

With Defoe missing, Fabio Borini led the Sunderland line with support from Duncan Watmore down the right and Wahbi Khazri down the left wing.

And it was Khazri that wasted a good opening two minutes in, blasting the ball high over the goal onto the running track that surrounds the pitch.

The Black Cats dominated the opening stages, with Jeremain Lens firing wide from close range at the back post eight minutes in after a good cross from deep from Tommy Robson.

It should have been 1-0 two minutes later, Borini saw his well-placed shot just pushed round the post by the outstretched hand of Geoffrey Jourdren in the Montpellier goal.

The quality of football was poor and Sunderland were dealt a double injury blow when first Kirchhoff and then Jones hobbled off the pitch within five minutes of each other.

The German midfielder didn't even wait for sub Charles N'Zogbia to be ready before making his own way off the pitch straight into the dressing room.

He looked far from happy and it is another injury blow two weeks before the Premier League kicks off.

Jones took a knock and needed treatent before deciding he couldn't continue.

The right-back made his way round the pitch to the dressing room, Seb Larsson on in his place for his first minutes of pre-season.

Sunderland had Mannone to thank for keeping them in the game, saving well from Ryad Boudebouz 36 minutes in, palming his shot round the post.

Borini - who had earlier shot wide and seen an effort saved - finally found the net 41 minutes in.

He latched onto a through ball from Lee Cattermole befoe finishing coolly past Jourdren.

Half-time: Montpellier 0 Sunderland 1

The pace and tempo improved after the break but it was Montpellier HSC that enjoyed the lions share of the ball.

Clear cut chances were few and far between in the opening 15 minutes of the second half, although Montpellier did win a series of corners.

Larsson was Sunderland's stand-out defender during that period, winning his headers and looking to play out from the right-back position.

Steve Mouwie should have levelled for Montpellier but he sent his bullet header wide of the post in the 64th minute from a Congre cross. A minute later Camara was booked for a dive.

Sunderland were camped in their own half and Montpellier's pressure paid off in the 67th minute, Boudebouz with the assist to Camara who rifled his shot low past Mannone from the edge of the area.

With 20 minutes left, John O'Shea was given his first taste of pre-season action, replacing Younes Kaboul in central-defence.

Lynden Gooch, Josh Robson and Joel Asoro also came on in the second half as Moyes made changes to his Sunderland side.

The Black Cats improved as the game wore on, showing more attacking intent with 17-year-old Asoro adding some pace and energy up front.

It ended all square in Aix-les-Bains as the tour of France came to a close with Sunderland still unbeaten.

Full-time: Montpellier 1 Sunderland 1

Montpellier: Jourdren, Congre, Vitorino Da Silva, Sawson, Boudebouz, Skhiri, Mounie, Camara (Marveaux, 79), Vanden Borre, Roussillon (Remy, 34 (Fito, 80)), Ninga,

Subs: Pionnier, N'Diaye, Lasne, Berigaud, Saint, Saihi Deplagwe.

Goals: Camara (67)

Booked: Camara (65)

Sunderland: Mannone, Jones (Larsson, 28), T.Robson, Kaboul (O'Shea, 72), Kone, Cattermole (E.Robson, 84 ), Borini, Khazri (J. Robson, 72), Lens (Asoro, 69), Kirchhoff (N'Zogbia, 23), Watmore (Gooch, 69)

Subs: Pickford, Honeyman, Stryjek, Ledger, Greenwood.

Goals: Borini (41)

Booked: T. Robson (11)