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Sunday, 6 October, 2002, 15:00 GMT 16:00 UK
Arsenal stroll to victory
Arsenal celebrate the first goal
Arsenal strolled to an easy win
Arsenal 3-1 Sunderland

Two goals in the first nine minutes from Kanu helped Arsenal stroll to a comfortable win over struggling Sunderland at Highbury.

The striker followed up his double-strike against Leeds with another two goals as Arsenal secured their seventh league win of the season.

The result also meant the Gunners created a new Premiership record by going unbeaten for 30 games.

Any chance of Sunderland causing the shock of the Premiership season were all but over inside two minutes.

  Key moments
2 mins: Kanu puts Arsenal ahead from a corner
9 mins: Kanu gets his second with a header
45 mins: Vieira gets the third on the stroke of half-time
82 mins: Craddock gets a consolation for Sunderland

A corner from Thierry Henry should have been dealt with at the near post, but the cross squirmed through and Sunderland keeper Thomas Sorensen could only push the ball out.

With Sunderland's defence static Kanu had the simple task of poking the ball home from two yards out.

In the corresponding fixture last season Arsenal were two goals up inside three minutes.


The unbeaten record proves that we are consistent and champions are consistent
Arsene Wenger
Arsenal manager
This time Sunderland held on for six more, but it will be little comfort for their travelling fans.

It was another tame goal as Ashley Cole was allowed time in the box and crossed for an unmarked Kanu to finish the move off with his head.

Just when things looked like they could get no worse for Sunderland they had Sorensen stretchered off after a collision with Henry.

Tore Andre Flo (blue) and Gilberto Silva tangle at Highbury
Flo found life difficult up front for Sunderland

The Danish keeper was rushed to hospital with a suspected dislocated elbow and Thomas Myhre took over in goal.

The Sunderland defence held out until first-half stoppage time when they gave away a needless free-kick on the edge of the box.

Henry laid the ball off for Wiltord whose shot was parried by Myhre, but Patrick Vieira was there to head the rebound into an empty net from close range.

Sunderland began the second half a bit brighter with the lively David Bellion seeing more of the ball on the right wing.

He crossed for Tore Andre Flo, but the big striker failed to direct his header on target.


The desire was there from us but it was the belief wasn't
Peter Reid
Sunderland boss

Flo had another chance to pull one back for Sunderland but he was unable to get a shot off and his claims for a penalty fell on deaf ears.

Moments later Henry should have made it 4-0 but his shot was blocked by Darren Williams.

Wiltord then cut open the Sunderland defence but his subsequent shot was well saved by Myhre and Gilberto Silva's follow-up was blocked on the line.

Arsenal continued to look dangerous and Ashley Cole went close with a right-foot shot.

But Sunderland grabbed an unlikely consolation when defender Jody Craddock got on the end of a cross from Kevin Kilbane and headed powerfully past David Seaman.



Arsenal: Seaman, Lauren, Campbell, Cygan, Cole, Ljungberg (Toure 78), Vieira, Silva, Wiltord (Edu 77), Henry (Jeffers 77), Kanu.
Subs Not Used: Taylor, Luzhny.

Goals: Kanu 3, 9, Vieira 45.

Sunderland: Sorensen (Myhre 13), Craddock, Babb, Reyna, Bellion, Williams, McCann, Arca, Kilbane, Thirlwell (Piper 58), Flo (Quinn 74).
Subs Not Used: McCartney, Stewart.

Goals: Craddock 82.

Attendance: 37,902.

Referee: D Elleray (Middlesex).

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's Simon Brotherton
"The scoreline doesn't do justice to the gap in class"
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger
"The boys have been tremendous"
Sunderland boss Peter Reid
"We all know what Arsenal are like"
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