Sunderland U23s 2-1 Huddersfield Town U23s
Sunderland under-23s came from behind to claim their first Premier League Cup win of the season against Huddersfield Town, thanks to Cole Kiernan’s 88th minute strike.
The Terriers went ahead inside 10 minutes through Micah Obiero, when he deflected Brandon Taylor’s clearance into the net.
Sunderland should have been level in a half that they dominated in terms of chances, Cieran Dunne, Nathan Greenwood and Jake Hackett all squandered opportunities shortly after the opener.
Sunderland started where they left off after the break and Ruben Sammut scored a deserved equaliser, when he was quickest to pounce on the rebound after Benji Kimpioka’s missed penalty.
And substitute Kiernan wrapped up the three points in the 88th minute when he calmly rounded the keeper and slotted home to send the Terriers home empty handed.
Elliott Dickman reintroduced Benji Kimpioka to the starting XI after he dropped to the bench for last Monday’s clash with West Brom, and Andrias Edmundsson also featured from the off for the first time this year.
The visitors drew first blood at Eppleton CW with a freak goal in the sixth minute.
Huddersfield’s Obiero closed down Brandon Taylor as he looked to clear his lines from the edge of the area, the ball then deflected off Obiero and looped into the net.
It was almost an instant response from the Lads as they looked to draw level when Greenwood crossed for Dunne, but the onrushing striker couldn’t compose himself and lashed the ball high and wide.
In the following attack it was Dunne’s turn to provide Greenwood with a chance as the Lads once again threatened.
The former ran down the left and squared it for Greenwood, but Giosue Bellagambi sprung to his right and held the effort.
Sunderland kept pushing for a leveller before the break and missed a glorious opportunity through Hackett.
Town’s keeper rushed out and missed a through ball leaving the goal-gaping, but Hackett was unable to capitalise and somehow put the effort wide.
The Lads started where they left off after half-time and won a penalty in their first meaningful venture forward, when Hackett was brought down.
Kimpioka stepped up and saw his penalty to the ‘keepers right well saved, but Sammut was quickest off the mark to fire in the rebound.
And the Lads almost went ahead in the 65th minute through Greenwood.
Hackett delivered a pin-point free-kick towards Greenwood who evaded his marker, but he volleyed the ball inches wide of the post.
Dickman introduced under-18s striking duo Cole Kiernan and Joe Hugill 10 minutes from time, and the former grabbed the winner in the 88th minute.
He latched onto a loose ball and composed himself, before rounding the ‘keeper and slotting the ball into an empty net to give Dickman’s side a well-deserved three points.
The result leaves Sunderland third in Group F of the Premier League Cup, behind leaders Liverpool and Wigan Athletic on goal difference.
Sunderland: Harker, Leonard, Edmundsson, Sammut, Taylor, Bainbridge, Mumba, Hackett, Kimpioka, Greenwood (Hugill 82), Dunne (Kiernan 82)
Subs: Kokolo, Abdelkader, Kiernan, Slack, Hugill
Huddersfield: Bellagambi, Pata (Phillips 46), Daley, Ayina, Healy (Thompson 69), Marriott (Akinola 69), Rowe, High, Obiero, Austerfield, Dyson
Subs: Phillips, Piarra, McCamley, Akinola, Thompson