SUNDERLAND moved boldly into their New Year programme with a display of all-out attacking football which put them in a commanding position against Brighton at Roker Park this afternoon. Well-taken goals by Billy Hughes (9 mins.) and Dennis Tueart (45 mins.) put them in with a good chance of claiming their first home win since September 30, and only their second in eleven games.
Newly-signed David Young, who made his debut as sweeper, was only lightly tested, but there was still the opportunity for him to demonstrate that Sunderland had added a capable performer to their defensive strength.
Sunderland made three changes in personnel from their last game three weeks ago. In addition to the introduction of Young, John Lathan was recalled at centre-forward and Joe Bolton took over from Keith Coleman who is suffering from a recurrence of flu.
Brighton had to leave out goalkeeper Brian Powney who was injured in training and Eddie Spearitt, who was injured in a car accident in mid-week. Their places were taken by Alan Dovey and Stephen Piper.
Heavy fog in the district presented travel problems to Sunderland’s travelling supporters, but visibility at the ground was quite good.
There was about 12,000 present when Goodwin won the toss for Brighton and Sunderland started the game attacking the Roker End. It was a brisk start too, with Kerr bringing in Tueart and Porterfield accepting a cross-field pass to keep the move going. Tueart made ground from the other wing to pick up the ball from Porterfield and forced a corner under challenge from Piper. Tueart took the kick himself, and though Watson won in the air at the far post, he was unable to bring his header on to the target.
In the next minute Sunderland were back again from a free-kick after Kerr had been pushed. Malone delayed the kick until Watson was in the goal area, and once again the centre half’s header was just off target.
A Templeman foul on Lathan had Sunderland moving again, but Bolton’s kick was headed out and when Horswill lobbed the ball back, the offside situation was so obvious that the Sunderland forwards walked away without a kick being signalled.
Boorn obstructed Porterfield in midfield but the kick was wasted by Bolton.
After Kerr had failed to find an opening for a shot, Sunderland were back again on the left in nine minutes to take the lead. There was a build-up in strength and when the ball ran loose at the angle of the penalty area Bolton moved up to hit a left-foot shot of tremendous power.
Dovey had it well covered, but the pace of the ball deceived him and it struck him in the face and rebounded in the direction of HUGHES, who stepped in to drive it through into goal.
Dovey had to gather a curling left-wing centre by Porterfield and when Porterfield moved up again on the left he gained a free-kick when he was obstructed by Boorn.
A header by Hughes and a couple of sliced clearances set up a chance for Horswill to crack a 30-yard drive which was too close for Brighton’s comfort.
Montgomery had to move out smartly to beat O’Sullivan to the ball when Bromley won space for a well-directed pass from the middle.
Next a headed clearance by Young and then a powerful tackle took all the sting out of a determined Brighton effort to get back into the game.
Watson’s close attention prevented Bridges from making progress on the right and shortly afterwards Watson moved up into the Brighton penalty area for a Young free-kick. He seemed to be in with a good chance when a favourable break of the ball gave him an opening 12 yards out, but his left-foot drive went wide. Then Hughes was unlucky with a close-range shot which struck Dovey and came back into play.
There was a flare-up between Ley and Tueart and there were lectures for both of them from the referee while Tueart received treatment.
When Sunderland came back again on the right, with Tueart collecting a well-placed pass from Hughes, Ley went in strongly again and Tueart was brought down. This time it was a free-kick to Sunderland and only the mildest of lectures for Ley.
Hughes had Brighton in trouble when moving well in midfield to hit a powerful shot straight at Dovey. The goalkeeper got both hands to the ball and though he failed to hold it, he reduced the pace so much that he then had a simple pick-up job.
A rash tackle by Tueart might have landed him in serious trouble with the referee, and he was lucky to receive only a few sharp words from Mr Lowe.
A great ball by Kerr and Hughes in with a chance again. He made extra space for himself by quick control, only to send a left-foot shot well wide. Goodwin, who injured himself in a vain attempt to halt Hughes, had to receive treatment before play was resumed.
Beamish warmed up on the track in anticipation of having to go into the game, but Goodwin was able to resume.
Tueart handled when Howell moved dangerously in the middle and a swerving free-kick by Ley was only inches wide, with Montgomery not too well placed to cover.
Kerr was brought down inside the penalty area when cutting in from the right, but the referee ruled obstruction instead of awarding a penalty. The indirect free-kick gave Malone a chance to try a shot, but was blocked short of goal.
A well-placed crossfield pass by Horswill enabled Tueart to race in from the left and hit a right foot which brought a good save from Dovey.
Sunderland were throwing a lot of weight into their attacks at this stage, and Brighton did well to hold out.
Then in the 45th minute Sunderland went further ahead following good work by Lathan, Hughes picked up a pass from the centre forward and went through the middle before touching the ball on to TUEART, who closed in to hit a low drive past Dovey.
In the first minute of the second half Kerr was scythed down by Goodwin when moving well on the left, but the free-kick was not turned to advantage.
It was nearer still when Sunderland came back again, with Hughes going well on the right to create an opening for Tueart whose wild drive from a good position went wide.
Handling by Howell enabled Malone to bring fresh pressure to bare on the Brighton defence. Tueart turned the full back’s free-kick across the goal for Watson to defy close marking and get in a shot which lifted over the bar.
Hughes, Lathan and Tuart were all involved in another furious Sunderland attack which ended with the ball being scrambled away for a corner.
A strong run by Tueart on the right was halted when he was pushed off the ball by a Ley, an offence which set Sunderland up for their third goal in 58 minutes.
Kerr took the kick and his drive towards the near post was brilliantly anticipated by HUGHES whose delicately timed header directed the ball just under the bar. Dovey managed to get a hand to it but the ball travelled on over his head into the net.
In the 66th minute Ley was booked for a foul on Tueart. Both sides brought on their substitutes at the same time, with Beamish replacing Boorn, and McGiven going on in place of Lathan.
Hughes was desperately unlucky not to complete his “hat trick” from a left-wing cross, failing by only inches to make contact.
Young had to give away a corner when Bridges moved dangerously on the right, and Watson moved across to send Howell’s inswinger behind. From the second kick, Ley sent in a powerful header which was well taken by Montgomery.
Malone cleared from just short of the line then Sunderland moved into a swinging attack on the left and when Tueart sent the ball into the middle Piper hammered it behind for a corner. After this had been cleared Sunderland came back again, with Porterfield storming through on the left to gain another corner which was headed over by Kerr.
Sunderland went further ahead in the 82nd minute with a magnificent goal by BOLTON. Kerr started it by holding the ball cleverly on the left before moving it inside to Tueart. With Bolton moving forward, Tueart tapped the ball into line for the full-back to hit a right-foot of such tremendous power from the edge of the penalty area that Dovey had no chance to reaching it.
With the last kick of the game Hughes sent a shot against the bar from close range.
SUNDERLAND: Montgomery, Malone, Bolton, Horswill, Watson, Young, Kerr, Hughes, Lathan, Porterfield, Tueart Sub: McGiven
BRIGHTON: Dovey, Templeman, Ley, Boorn, Goodwin, Piper, Howell, Bridges, Robertson, Bromley, O’Sullivan. Sub: Beamish
Referee: Mr M Lowe of Sheffield
HOW THE GOALS CAME
HUGHES 9 min.
TUEART 45 min.
HUGHES 58 min.
BOLTON 82 min.
SUNDERLAND had this game going their way from an early stage and they were fully entitled to the decisive margin.
Young fitted in well to a defence which was brilliantly organised by Watson. But most of the action was at the front by Hughes, Tueart, and Kerr. They kept up a running challenge which always looked like producing goals.
There was a lot of command in midfield, too, from Porterfield and Horswill.
Story taken from the Football Echo on January 6 1973.