- Sunderland vs Spurs

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Saturday 7 December 2013 | Stadium of Light | Referee: Lee Mason | Attendance 37,963

  • Adam Johnson (37)
1 - 2
  • Paulinho (43)
  • John O'Shea (50 OG)

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Match report

For match photos, scroll to PHOTOSTREAM above left; for stats click on the stats tab. Manager reaction below.

John O'Shea scored a decisive own goal as Tottenham Hotspur came from behind to pick up a 2-1 victory over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.

The hosts took the lead late in the first half when Adam Johnson capitalised on a Hugo Lloris error following an Ondrej Celustka cross.

But Spurs were level before the break through Paulinho and O'Shea inadvertently diverted the ball past Vito Mannone in the 50th minute to hand the visitors all three points.

Jermain Defoe was also twice denied by the woodwork as the visitors went in search of a third.

Defeat for Sunderland – a result that leaves them bottom of the Barclays Premier League and without a win in four – will be especially difficult to stomach as a Phil Bardsley own goal handed Chelsea a 4-3 win at the same ground on Wednesday. While Gus Poyet's men face a lengthy battle to beat the drop, his former club Spurs are sixth.

Sunderland made four changes to the side that lost to Chelsea on Wednesday, with Adam Johnson, Steven Fletcher, Sebastian Larsson and Ondrej Celustka coming in for Andrea Dossena, Craig Gardner, Emanuele Giaccherini and Fabio Borini.

Andre Villas-Boas also made a quartet of alterations from his side’s 2-1 midweek victory at Fulham, bringing Kyle Naughton, Mousa Dembele, Lewis Holtby and Nacer Chadli in for Erik Lamela, Sandro and injured duo Jan Vertonghen and Vlad Chiriches.

After a quiet opening 10 minutes, Paulinho had the first meaningful opportunity of the match, sending a dipping effort from distance narrowly over the crossbar. But it was the hosts who took the lead in the 37th minute, as goalkeeper Lloris made a poor attempt to deal with a Celustka cross, palming the ball to the feet of Johnson, who gratefully smashed it into the back of the net for his first goal of the season.

The Lilywhites, though, were level six minutes later, Paulinho prodding home from close range after Chadli had nodded the ball down from a Holtby free-kick. Lloris had to be alert moments later as Celustka fired a thunderous effort straight at the goalkeeper from outside the Spurs penalty area.

The North Londoners were ahead five minutes into the second period as Dembele attempted to pull the ball across the face of goal, but got lucky as it deflected into the goal off O'Shea. The Irishman's own goal came in the same minute as he scored at the right end against Chelsea in midweek.

Defoe headed against the post from an Aaron Lennon cross seven minutes later as the men from White Hart Lane found their stride. He went close again in 66th minute, but dragged his effort narrowly wide of the left-hand post, and the England international hit the post once again 11 minutes from time before Borini passed up the chance to salvage a draw as Sunderland applied the pressure in the closing stages.

Sunderland head coach Gus Poyet: "It's difficult to analyse the game. We conceded maybe at the wrong time, but then the second half, it was very disappointing. Things happen in football and you never know the consequences. It's a totally different game if you come in at half-time 1-0.

"Saying that, we talked about things at half time - we needed to go out second half and perform, we're playing against a very good team, and somehow again we conceded an own goal. Then it was too open and a game that I don't like to play. When you play against a better team you take too many risks, too many chances."

"That's the way I would like this team to play football, but I've said it a few times and I'm going to repeat it again now  - we cannot do it for long periods, we cannot maintain that level. Either because of the concentration or the quality. Nobody can say that we are not trying and the players are trying their best, but the table is there and the table doesn't lie.

"Other teams, they win somehow - we don't. Every single game is bigger than the one before."

Spurs head coach Andre Villas-Boas: "The players were absolutely outstanding. It could have been one of those situations again where we would rue our missed chances, but it wasn't.

"The result is entirely deserved and puts us back on track near the top where we want to be. It's a great win for Tottenham and a great fightback from the Man City result.

"We came back from a very difficult situation, so it was important for us to put ourselves back on track."

Fan Rating

- rate the player performances for this match

Line-up All Fans BFR
25. Vito Mannone 5.63 5.97
16. John O'Shea 3.57 4.88
5. Wes Brown 5.83 4.46
2. Phillip Bardsley 5.0 5.15
12. Ondrej Celustka 5.0 4.13
7. Sebastian Larsson 6.5 5.16
11. Adam Johnson 8.0 5.65
4. Ki Sung-Yueng 5.83 4.29
14. Jack Colback 5.67 4.82
9. Steven Fletcher 6.83 5.4
17. Jozy Altidore 7.43 5.31
Substitutes All Fans BFR
13. Jordan Pickford 6.75 4.4
33. Lee Cattermole 5.25 4.98
23. Emanuele Giaccherini 5.33 5.82
21. Modibo Diakité 5.0 4.25
31. Fabio Borini 5.67 5.7
3. Andrea Dossena 6.5 3.8
8. Craig Gardner 5.0 4.85
Line-up All Fans BFR
25. Hugo Lloris 4.11 5.66
16. Kyle Naughton 3.4 3.58
2. Kyle Walker 5.64 5.09
20. Michael Dawson 4.0 4.66
15. Etienne Capoue 4.0 4.31
7. Aaron Lennon 5.3 4.75
14. Lewis Holtby 4.9 4.36
19. Mousa Dembélé 4.0 5.08
21. Nacer Chadli 3.6 4.6
8. Paulinho 5.64 5.24
18. Jermain Defoe 4.2 4.72
Substitutes All Fans BFR
9. Roberto Soldado 5.0 5.2
17. Andros Townsend 5.67 5.19
22. Gylfi Sigurdsson 3.0 5.56
35. Ezekiel Fryers 0.0 3.16
24. Brad Friedel 0.0 3.62
30. Sandro 3.6 4.17
11. Erik Lamela 0.0 4.23

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