Fuller scored his fourth Premier League goal of the season
A Ricardo Fuller header ensured Stoke beat a below-par Sunderland to move out of the Premier League relegation zone.
Fuller came close to giving Stoke a first-half lead, but Anton Ferdinand cleared from near his goal-line.
The lively Jamaican got the winner when he leapt above Sunderland's defence to head home Rory Delap's throw-in from six yards after 76 minutes.
And Fuller could easily gave doubled the score, but the striker hit the post when put through by Michael Tonge.
Sunderland boss Roy Keane had warned that any player showing signs of complacency after the victory over Newcastle on Saturday should stay away from the Britannia Stadium and watch soap operas instead.
Pulis hails best display of season so far
Those Black Cats players who were on the pitch were perhaps wishing they had remained at home and caught up on Coronation Street as they were out-muscled by a Stoke side who should have scored more.
Stoke, now two points above third-from-bottom Wigan, next face Arsenal at home and on this form Delap and Stoke's towering forwards will give the Gunners some food for thought.
Delap's catapult throw-ins predictably caused problems and the Black Cats gave their former player far too many opportunities to launch from the sidelines.
The first half belonged to the home team, with Tony Pulis's side bombarding the Sunderland half with long balls and crosses for Mamady Sidibe to flick on to strike partner Fuller.
Keane admits poor display
Indeed, the energetic Fuller had the best chance of the half when Sidibe headed on a Delap long-throw, he tried to poke into the net only for the alert Ferdinand to save Sunderland's blushes.
In the 20th minute, Seyi Olofinjana's drive from the edge of the box needed Marton Fulop to strain every sinew to get down low to his right.
Sunderland were sloppy in possession, epitomised by Dean Whitehead when, under no pressure, the midfielder gave the ball away cheaply in his own half.
The visitors, reduced to half chances in the first 45 minutes, the best of which was a wayward Djibril Cisse header, brought on striker Kenwyne Jones for the start of the second half to work alongside Cisse and El-Hadji Diouf in a 4-3-3 formation.
However, Stoke continued to dominate and were inches from taking the lead when a Fuller shot ricocheted off Phil Bardsley and bounced away across goal to safety.
Keane made a further change, bringing on Michael Chopra for Cisse, but it made little difference as Stoke took the lead with Fuller scoring his fourth league goal of the season.
This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.