Sunderland under-23s suffered a 4-0 defeat at the hands of Reading in the Premier League 2 on Sunday.
Josh Barrett’s first-half strike gave the Royals the advantage going into the break, and further goals from Tyler Frost and Michael Olise in the second period put the game beyond reach for the Black Cats.
Frost grabbed his second five minutes from time, to ensure a miserable afternoon at Eppleton CW for the under-23s.
The lads played the majority of the second half with 10-men, after Ahmed Abdelkader was sent off for handball outside of his area.
Elliott Dickman made two changes from the trip to Fulham, with Brandon Taylor coming in to form a five-man defence and Abdelkader making his first league start this season.
Sunderland created their first opportunity just two minutes in; Ruben Sammut’s corner was met by Jack Bainbridge, but his header was straight at the keeper.
And the lads’ back five were holding firm until the 27th minute, when Barret took aim from 20-yards and fired into the top corner.
Sunderland had a penalty shout turned down on the stroke of half time, when Lee Connelly went down after a clumsy tackle from Jeriel Dorsett, but the referee waved it away.
The lads were almost level straight after the interval, when Cieran Dunne shifted the ball onto his left before firing inches past the post.
But then things got worse for the lads in what was a frantic start to the second half.
A slick move down the left from the visitors ended with Frost baring down on goal, and he slotted past Abdelkader.
The Algerian stopper was then sent off in the 50th minute; he rushed out of his goal and was deemed to have handled the ball outside his area by referee Elliot Swallow.
The Royals added a third five minutes later; Teddy Howe crossed for Olise who couldn’t miss from close range.
And they soon had a fourth, when Frost thundered home from distance to grab his second of the afternoon.
Next up for the under-23s is a clash with Liverpool in the Premier League Cup
Sunderland: Abdelkader, Gamble, Kokolo, Edmundsson, Taylor, Bainbridge, Mumba, Neil, Dunne, Sammut, Connelly
Subs: Evans, Patterson, Greenwood, Connolly, Leonard
Reading: Boyce-Clarke, Nditi, Burley, Tetek, Medford-Smith, Dorsett, Howe, East, House, Olise, Barrett
Subs: Fontaine, Roberts, Frost, Nevors, Bristow