Aiden McGeady celebrates his goal against AFC Wimbledon.
Our Sunderland writer Phil Smith has dished out his player ratings following the victory, scroll down and flick through our gallery to see who shone and who struggled at the Stadium of Light.
Made a very good save from Wagstaff in the second half. Not tested particularly regularly in a poor game. 6 Not able to get forward as much as he would have liked but defended resolutely and barely beaten by his winger. 6 Made one brilliant challenge in stoppage time and battled typically hard. Could have been more composed on the ball. 6 Distribution was poor but aerially good and Sunderland needed that against an opponent who relied heavily on set pieces. 6 Not as sound defensively as he usually is but tried to get forward and get balls into the box. Options were rarely on for him when he did. 6 Lost the ball in dangerous areas on a couple of occasions but generally tidy. 6 Some clever passes into space but not as imposing as he can be. Rarely gave it away to his credit. 6 Faded towards the end of his cameo but a very encouraging display. Attacked with real purpose and had the beating of his marker just about every time. 7 Industrious and made some good runs into the final third but created little before being taken off. 6 Was having a frustrating afternoon with little movement for him in the box but won the game with a ruthless and fine individual goal. 7 Offered little presence. Struggled to make the ball stick and be a focal point, with no real sight of goal. 5 Exactly what was expected. Raw but quick and very aggressive, pressing relentlessly and trying to make runs into space. 6 An important cameo, carrying the ball well and contributing defensively. Perhaps unlucky not to start. 7 Little time to make an impact but helped see the game out comfortably. N/A