Ha’way back when: Sunderland’s record against Saturday’s opponents Brentford

Don Goodman.
Don Goodman.
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You have to go a long way back to see most of Sunderland’s football rivalry with Brentford FC.

The teams first met in the 1935-36 season after the Bees won promotion to the top flight for the first time.

It was a great year for the Rokermen who lifted the League championship for the sixth and final (so far ...) time.

The Wearsiders showed their quality with a 5-1 win at Brentford, with goals coming from Bobby Gurney (2), Len Duns, Raich Carter an Patsy Gallacher.

But the Bees - who ended the campaign in a magnificent fifth place - had their revenge at Roker later in the season, winning 3-1 thanks to two goals in the final five minutes. Duns had earlier brought Sunderland level at 1-1.

It was one of only two home defeats.

Shaun Cunnington.

Shaun Cunnington.

This was a golden era for Brentford. The following season they finished above the reigning champions, coming sixth to Sunderland’s eighth as Manchester City lifted the title.

At Roker Park, Sunderland defeated Brentford 4-1 thanks to two goals from Len Duns and one each from Patsy Gallacher and Bobby Gurney.

The fixture at Brentford ended 3-3 with Duns, Carter and Gallacher on target. Carter could have won it, but had a late penalty saved.

It was something of a golden era for Sunderland too, as the Rokermen finally won the FA Cup for the first time that season.

The 37-38 campaign saw Brentford finish sixth and Sunderland eighth again.

The first game between the sides saw Brentford enjoy their home advantage with a stunning 4-0 win.

At Roker later in the campaign, an Eddie Burbanks goal gave Sunderland the two points.

The season before the Second World War saw both sides disappoint, Sunderland finishing 16th and Brentford 18th.

Sunderland triumphed in the capital 3-2 thanks to goals from Jimmy Connor and Carter (2). Sunderland came from 2-0 down, with Carters goals both coming in the final 10 minutes.

The game between the sides at Roker Park ended in a 1-1 draw after Eddie Burbanks had given the home side the lead.

When football resumed after the War, Brentford’s golden era started to fade as they were immediately relegated. Sunderland, who finished ninth, enjoyed a double over Brentford, winning 3-0 at home thanks to goals from Cliff Whitelum (2) and Burbanks, while the away game brought a 2-1 scoreline with Dickie Davis and Burbanks again getting the goals.

The next league clash between the sides was over 40 years later, when Denis Smith led Sunderland to the Division Three title.

The opening game of the 1987-88season saw the clubs meet at Brentford with a Keith Bertschin goal on 46 minutes securing the win.

Sunderland: Hardwick, Kay, Agboola, Bennett, MacPhail, Armstrong, Lemon, Proctor, Bertschin, Gates (Moore 82), Owers (Gray 70).

In the return fixture, goals from Gary Owers and Bertschin again clinched the win.

The last time the clubs have met in league action was in 1992-93. Brentford had just been promoted into Divison One but ended up going straight back down as they finished in 22nd place. Sunderland finished in 21st, just one point ahead.

In December, 1992, Brentford defeated Sunderland 3-1 thanks to two goals from Gary Blissett and one from Michael Bennett. Shaun Cunnington had earlier pulled Sunderland level at 1-1.

The away fixtured in a 1-1 draw, Don Goodman’s late goal cancelling out Marcus Gayle’s goal.

Sunderland: Norman, Kay, Gray, Atkinson, Butcher, Ball, Owers, Cunnington, Goodman, Harford, Armstrong. Subs not used: Davenport, Colquhoun.

The clubs have met just once since then, in 2006, when two goals from Dudley ‘DJ’ Campbell gave Brentford victory in the fourth round of the FA Cup.