Sunday 24 November 2013
West Bromwich Albion scored two late goals to secure a fourth successive win in the top-flight for the first time since 1980 and go third in the Barclays Premier League table.
Zoltan Gera put the visitors ahead on the half-hour mark with a curling shot after a pass by Peter Odemwingie and Shane Long doubled the lead a minute before the break.
The Republic of Ireland international striker dispossessed home goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, after he had failed to hold on to Chris Brunt's through ball, and buried his chance.
Craig Gardner set up a grandstand finish when his 73rd-minute free-kick deflected into the West Brom net off Marc-Antoine Fortune in the wall.
Substitute then Romelu Lukaku restored the Baggies' two-goal advantage from the penalty spot after Adam Johnson fouled Liam Ridgewell.
But Stephane Sessegnon tapped home a rebound in the 87th minute, after Boaz Myhill had blocked Steven Fletcher's header, to give Sunderland hope.
Fletcher then had a header saved by Myhill before Albion broke away in the fifth minute of stoppage time for Fortune to make the points safe.
Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill said: "I was very pleased with the second half performance, delighted with it. They're probably as good a counter-attacking side outside the top sides and are up there on merit."
West Brom head coach Steve Clarke said: "The players deserve all the credit. They've worked really hard and made a lot of people sit up and take notice – the Albion fans can enjoy this spell."
West Brom went on to finish eighth in the table while Sunderland came 17th, avoiding relegation by three points.