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Sunderland drew with Southampton 1-1 in the Barclays Premier League on Saturday afternoon at the St Mary’s Stadium.
Emanuele Giaccherini gave the Black Cats an early lead but late on Jose Fonte poked the ball past Westwood to give the Saints a point.
There was a shocking change in the Sunderland side as Craig Gardner replaced the ever-promising Cabral in the centre of midfield and it appeared to be the big decider.
Moment of madness or moment of Genius?
The game got off to a flyer for Sunderland as from an early corner, sent in by Sebastian Larsson, Giaccherini leaned down low to twist his header in.
Though the dream start for Paolo Di Canio was nearly wiped away instantly, The Saints sent a teasing ball through which, ‘man-of-the-moment’, Ricky Lambert tapped in. Unfortunately for the England international, it was ruled out for offside.
The game started to get very messy and both teams started to lose shape with both sides struggling to get a stronghold of the possession.
Though it was Southampton that started to turn the heat up as they searched for their equaliser and if not for a great save from Keiren Westwood, they would have had it with Lambert coming in with a superb headed effort.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side’s pressure was matched by Sunderland’s Jozy Altidore who kept squirming in and around the home side’s box.
The game started to get tasty after that with radical challenges coming in from everywhere and in the space of five minutes, three yellow cards were produced.
Even Craig Gardner managed to get his infamous disciplinary record marked further and only half-an-hour of his season had taken place.
Going into added-time at the end of the first half all seemed calm and as it had been for the past 10 minutes, though a late penalty appeal for Southampton caused concern for many.
However Lee Mason waved it away and it appeared the correct decision.
Both managers were not impressed at half-time and you could see this when they both made changes at the break.
Ji entered the game for Di Canio’s side while Pochettino brought on Nathaniel Clyne and record signing Dani Osvaldo.
The changes seemed to create a sort of urgency for the south-coast side as they started to pile the pressure on the Sunderland defence.
The increased pressure almost paid off for the Saints but Jay Rodriguez could only header it straight into the arms of Westwood, and then Lambert had a shot well saved by the Irish international.
Southampton didn’t stop in their efforts to get their equaliser and Sunderland could not get a hold of the ball in any shape of form.
Then in the 88th minute their efforts and determination payed off as from a free-kick, which didn’t look very dangerous, the ball was poked in by Jose Fonte.
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