FOR their first game of the season at Roker Park this afternoon, Sunderland made two positional changes from the side beaten by Middlesbrough last week, but the important change was that centre forward Dave Watson was able to resume after being kept out of the Ayresome Park game with an ankle injury. Jimmy Hamilton was pulled out to the stand-by position of substitute, and John Lathan was switched to No. 10.
Orient, having travelled with 13 players, were expected to field the side which dropped a home point to Oxford United last week but there was a late decision to bring Barrie Fairbrother at No. 8 in place of Terry Brisley, who was named as substitute. Conditions were ideal, with the pitch in perfect condition, but again there was a poor turn-out on the terraces with only about 12,000 present at the start.
Rofe won the toss for Orient and Sunderland started the game attacking the Roker end.
It was an anxious start, because when the ball was played pack, Porterfield lost possession to a powerful challenge by Dyson, and Horswill had to cover up quickly.
Next came the long ball down the middle by Horswill, and though Lathan went on to drive the ball into the Orient net, the referee had already signalled offside against him.
When Bullock and Pitt tangled in a heading duel the referee awarded a free-kick against the Sunderland centre half, but this was not taken until Bullock had received treatment from his trainer.
Sunderland were on the attack again when Harris fouled Watson in mid-field and from Pitt’s kick Watson was above Harris in the air, but Downing joined in to concede a corner.
Bowyer was just off target with a powerful header from a free-kick on the right, and when a neat passing move opened up the Sunderland defence on the left, Porterfield did well to get the ball back to Montgomery.
McGiven joined in Sunderland next attack and when Watson’s challenge allowed his cross to travel on, Kerr shot into the side netting.
When Malone tried to set up a break for Porterfield on the right, Rofe followed through with his tackle and Porterfield was sent crashing on to the track. Fortunately he was quickly on his feet and did not need attention.
A foul on Tueart by Harris near the line prevented the winger from beating him and Porterfield’s lob was cleared. A determined run by Malone carried him through on the right and when Lathan joined in to slip the ball towards goal, a twisting header by Watson sent it just over the bar.
McGiven had a hand in two powerful attacks which had Orient in real trouble and then Goddard had to race from his line to gather a backward header by Watson.
Sunderland, who had been shaken by Orient’s quickness to the ball, and power in the tackle began to get in just as quickly themselves, with McGiven setting the example.
Next came a brilliant run through the middle by Kerr to create a shooting chance for Lathan, whose finishing effort lacked the pace to trouble Goddard.
Sunderland came back again with Kerr and Porterfield forcing the pace for Lathan to get in a shot which was deflected for a corner. Watson headed wide from Kerr’s corner.
Horswill recovered brilliantly when Bowyer looked dangerous and then Goddard had to turn a well-placed shot by Porterfield over the bar.
Pitt and then Lathan failed to make the best use of chances created under intense pressure in the Orient penalty area, and then a great break by Malone had Goddard diving out frantically to prevent the full back’s centre from reaching Watson.
Orient forced a corner on the right and after Dyson’s kick had been cleared and then returned to the middle, there was a free-kick for Sunderland when an Orient forward went into Montgomery with fists upraised.
Orient had to cover up quickly when Porterfield sent Tueart through the middle.
When Sunderland came back again with Malone, Kerr and then Lathan pressing strongly on the right, Porterfield picked up an inside pass to hit a right-foot shot which bounced on the bar before going behind.
Another free-kick against Bullock had Sunderland moving again and after a Porterfield shot had been blocked, Sunderland had a lucky escape when two weak headers in front of goal following a free-kick by Hoadley, left Downing free to get in a header which dropped just over the bar.
Goddard had to receive treatment after diving out to Lathan’s feet to collect a centre by Tueart.
Sunderland were near to a goal when Kerr turned on to a Lathan pass to hit a first-time drive which had Goddard diving across goal to palm away for a corner.
Sunderland were quickly on the attack again and when Tueart’s break on the left from a Porterfield pass drew Harris out to the left, Watson was able to turn on the winger’s centre for Lathan to get in a shot which Goddard finger-tipped away from just short of the line.
Watson had a fierce shot forced away for a corner and then Sunderland came back again with Porterfield showing great resolution to gain a corner at the other side when his centre was deflected.
A Pitt foul on Bowyer just inside the Orient half produced a Rofe free-kick which enabled Fairbrother to force a corner on the right.
When Sunderland broke quickly from a kick Kerr was dragged from the ball by Harris, who was promptly booked for the offence.
When Lathan was fouled by Bennett 30 yards out, Watson beat Harris in the air from Malone’s kick but his header was well wide.
McGiven was hurt in a tackle but appeared to run off the effects and there was another frantic moment for Goddard when Sunderland won a corner on the right and when Kerr’s kick was returned to him he hit a swerving angled drive which the goalkeeper did well to palm out and retrieve
In the 64th minute Hamilton came into the game as sub for Lathan. A free-kick against Pitt in mid-field was driven goalwards by Bennett but Downing missed a great opportunity of getting in a close-range header.
A well timed interception by Bennett prevented Porterfield and Tueart from going through on the right.
Sunderland went ahead deservedly in the 80th minute following a free-kick for a foul off Tueart by Hoadley on the left.
Officials attendance 12,658.
Kerr took the kick and when Watson and Pitt challenged together in front of goal, the ball was forced wide for TUEART to slam it home with a fierce right-foot shot.
Within a minute Orient might have been level when Pitt gave away a free-kick in mid-field. The ball was lobbed into the goalmouth and pulled down to Harris’s feet. As Montgomery dived out, the centre half hit his shot over the goalkeeper’s head and over the bar too.
Fairbrother was just off target with an angled drive. They came back again to gain a corner on the left following a long throw by Dyson, and from Downing’s kick Bullock and Harris missed great chances in front of an open goal.
SUNDERLAND: 1 Montgomery, 2 Malone, 3 Bolton, 4 Horswill, 5 Pitt, 6 Porterfield, 7 McGiven, 8 Kerr, 9 Watson, 10 Lathan, 11 Tueart. Sub: Hamilton
ORIENT: 1 Goddard, 2 Hoadley, 3 Rofe, 4 Bennett, 5 Harris, 6 Allen, 7 Downing, 8 Fairbrother, 9 Bullock, 10 Dyson, 11 Bowyer. Sub : Brisley
Referee: Mr J Hunting of Leicester
HOW THE GOALS CAME
TUEART 80 mins.
SUNDERLAND deserved their success, but they made hard work of wringing the all-important goal from a determined Orient defence.
Sunderland had the better of the game, particularly in the second half, but there was not a great deal of penetration from their front runners.
The power on the side was supplied by Kerr and Porterfield, but perhaps the most spectacular contribution of all came from Malone, who seemed less perturbed than anyone by Orient’s physical play.
Horswill was the outstanding performer in defence with Pitt having difficulty in the middle. McGiven’s first half was extremely good.
Story taken from the Football Echo on August 19 1972.