Stephane Sessegnon

Game of the Day: SAFC 4 Stoke 0

by Ashley Houghton

We head back to last season for today's game of the day.

Sunderland 4 Stoke City 0

18th September 2011

Sunderland hammered Stoke City 4-0 at the Stadium of Light to earn their first win of the 2011-12 season whilst also inflicting the Potters' first defeat of the campaign.

Three goals in 28 first-half minutes from Titus Bramble, a Jonathan Woodgate own-goal and Craig Gardner gave the hosts a comfortable half-time lead before Seb Larsson added a fourth on the hour.

It was one of the Black Cats' best performances of the season with a flow of possession football proving too much for the visitors.

Bramble opened the scoring on five minutes with his first Sunderland goal, Larsson’s corner fell to the defender whose shot was fumbled over the line by Asmir Begovic in the visitors’ goal.

The Black Cats’ lead was doubled six minutes later, Woodgate was the next Stoke player to err as he attempted to stop Larsson's dipping pass reaching Nicklas Bendtner only to head the ball past Begovic.

And the dream start was completed on the half-hour as Ryan Shawcross deflected Craig Gardner’s strike beyond Stoke’s Bosnian goalkeeper.

Stoke posed little threat to the Sunderland back line, though Simon Mignolet did well to get a hand to Marc Wilson's free-kick, while Bramble also blocked a Cameron Jerome shot.

The game was well and truly put to bed on the hour when Larsson’s cleverly flighted free-kick evaded Begovic.

Sunderland: Mignolet, Brown, Richardson, O’Shea, Bramble, Larsson (Colback, 63), Gardner, Vaughan, Elmohamady, Sessegnon (Ji Dong-won, 81), Bendtner (Wickham, 85).

Subs not used: Westwood, Turner, Cattermole, McClean.