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Page last updated at 17:03 GMT, Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Sunderland   0 - 2   Blackpool

DJ Campbell (left) celebrates his opener with Luke
DJ Campbell (left) celebrates his opener with Luke Varney

By Owen Phillips

DJ Campbell grabbed a second-half double as Blackpool made Sunderland pay for a host of missed chances to secure a fifth away league win of the season.

Asamoah Gyan, Darren Bent and Danny Welbeck all squandered good openings and visiting goalkeeper Richard Kingson made a number of excellent stops.

But Campbell shot home from Ian Evatt's headed flick to make it 1-0.

Bent hit the bar with a fine free-kick but Campbell added a second in injury time from Matt Phillips's low cross.

But Sunderland will be left scratching their heads at the result after creating enough chances to have won two games in a refreshingly open and frantic first period.

Welbeck, Bent, Jordan Henderson and Gyan all spurned at least two opportunities apiece as the hosts dominated possession and territory.

Holloway never doubted Blackpool ability

Bent twice sent efforts wide of the far post after cutting in from the left, Wellbeck missed his kick from an inviting centre and failed to get on the end of a looping pass when six yards out.

Henderson's best strike on goal saw goalkeeper Kingson uncomfortably fumble his measured shot around the post.

But Gyan missed the best openings, shooting into the side-netting after showing good strength when chasing a long pass, and then hopelessly miskicking from six yards out.

Blackpool were not without their opportunities - thanks to their willingness to commit and leave men forward even when under severe pressure - and they looked very capable of scoring on the break.

Campbell, in particular, looked bright and sharp and one clever turn on the edge of the box after a breathtaking run from first-half substitute Phillips - on for the injured Elliott Grandin - almost produced a great counter-attacking goal.

Luke Varney also tested home keeper Craig Gordon and Campbell whistled a shot narrowly wide after a purposeful run.

But because of their dominance in the middle of the park and the sheer volume of chances, Sunderland boss Steve Bruce must have been staggered and sickened in equal measure when the visitors took the lead five minutes after the break.


Clever interplay on the right allowed Neal Eardley to deliver the ball into the box and when his cross was flicked on by Evatt, Campbell was on hand to fire home from 10 yards.

The Seasiders could have doubled their lead with Gary Taylor-Fletcher almost converting a far-post cross and Craig Cathcart somehow missing a free header when it seemed easier to score.

But as the second half wore on, Sunderland piled forward at every opportunity and their relentless pressure looked certain to be rewarded in the closing stages.

Blackpool, chasing a seventh win in 17 league matches, simply could not contain Sunderland's rampant attack and had to resort to a combination of last-ditch defending, fine goalkeeping and a large slice of fortune.

Substitute Steed Malbranque's strike was beaten away by the over-worked - if not entirely convincing - Kingson, and the keeper also did well to keep out Henderson's 18-yard strike.

The best chances, however, came in the last 10 minutes.

Some comical defending involving two terrible clearances saw Kingson called on to block Welbeck's strike and then Evatt made amends for his shocking miscue by heading Bent's powerful follow-up over the bar.

Bruce 'puzzled' by fixture congestion

Bent then came the closest to a home goal all afternoon with a stunning 25-yard free-kick that crashed back down off the bar and to safety.

And Blackpool made the game safe in injury-time when the impressive Phillips tricked his way into the box and crossed for Campbell who smashed the ball home via the bar.

Blackpool boss Ian Holloway was incensed that Titus Bramble - an early replacement for the injured Nedum Onuoha - was only shown a yellow card for a late challenge.

However nothing could spoil another wonderful day for a side who are in eighth spot in the Premier League table. They sit just two points behind Sunderland but because of their three recent postponements they also have three games in hand.

Live text and stats


Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Barclays Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Sunderland 0-2 Blackpool FT
(HT 0-0)
    • Campbell 50
    • Campbell 90





    Ref: MarrinerAtt: 42,892


    • Sunderland 55%
    • Blackpool 45%

    Attempts on target

    • Sunderland 16
    • Blackpool 4

    Attempts off target

    • Sunderland 16
    • Blackpool 5


    • Sunderland 9
    • Blackpool 2


    • Sunderland 6
    • Blackpool 5
    • Final Result
    • 94:09 The referee brings the game to a close.
    • Full Time
    • 90:00+3:13 David Carney is ruled offside. Indirect free kick taken by Craig Gordon.
    • 90:00+2:21 Luke Varney fouled by Titus Bramble, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Stephen Crainey.
    • 90:00+2:21 Booking Titus Bramble is cautioned by the ref for unsporting behaviour.
    • 89:36 Assist on the goal came from Matt Phillips.
    • 89:36 GOAL - Dudley CampbellSunderland 0 - 2 Blackpool A goal is scored by Dudley Campbell from inside the six-yard box high into the middle of the goal. Sunderland 0-2 Blackpool.
    • 88:41 Inswinging corner taken by Jordan Henderson, Headed effort from deep inside the area by Danny Welbeck misses to the left of the goal.
    • 86:42 The assistant referee signals for offside against Steed Malbranque. Indirect free kick taken by Richard Kingson.
    • 84:13 Craig Cathcart concedes a free kick for a foul on Danny Welbeck. Darren Bent shoots direct from the free kick,
    • 83:49 Corner taken right-footed by Jordan Henderson, clearance made by Craig Cathcart.
    • 83:30 Ahmed Elmohamady takes a shot. Blocked by Neal Eardley.
    • 83:10 Darren Bent takes a shot. Save by Richard Kingson.
    • 81:20 Lee Cattermole takes a shot from 18 yards. Richard Kingson makes a comfortable save.
    • 80:01 Substitution David Carney joins the action as a substitute, replacing Gary Taylor-Fletcher.
    • 80:01 Substitution Keith Southern is brought on as a substitute for Ludovic Sylvestre.
    • 79:22 Inswinging corner taken by Jordan Henderson from the left by-line played to the near post, Headed effort from inside the area by Danny Welbeck misses to the right of the target.
    • 78:35 Ahmed Elmohamady takes a shot. Comfortable save by Richard Kingson.
    • 76:39 Foul by Kieran Richardson on Dudley Campbell, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Neal Eardley.
    • 75:43 Short corner taken by Jordan Henderson from the right by-line.
    • 75:02 Short corner worked by Jordan Henderson.
    • 73:20 Dudley Campbell concedes a free kick for a foul on Anton Ferdinand. Direct free kick taken by Anton Ferdinand.
    • 72:04 Shot by Lee Cattermole from just outside the area goes over the net.
    • 71:53 Darren Bent crosses the ball, clearance by Stephen Crainey.
    • 70:42 Steed Malbranque has an effort at goal from 18 yards. Comfortable save by Richard Kingson.
    • 69:57 Steed Malbranque takes a shot. Brilliant save by Richard Kingson.
    • 69:42 The ball is sent over by Ahmed Elmohamady, blocked by Craig Cathcart.
    • 69:22 The ball is delivered by Steed Malbranque, clearance by Ian Evatt.

    • Print Sponsor

    Barclays Premier League table snapshot

    As it stood on 28 Dec 2010 23:59 UK

    Position Team P GD PTS
    1 Man Utd 18 22 38
    2 Man City 20 16 38
    3 Arsenal 18 17 35
    4 Tottenham 19 6 33
    5 Chelsea 18 17 31
    6 Bolton 19 7 29
    7 Sunderland 20 -1 27
    8 Blackpool 17 -3 25
    9 Blackburn 20 -5 25
    10 Stoke 19 -1 24
    11 Liverpool 17 -1 22
    12 Everton 19 -1 22
    13 Newcastle 19 -3 22
    14 West Brom 19 -9 22
    15 Aston Villa 19 -14 20
    16 Birmingham 18 -3 19
    17 Fulham 19 -4 19
    18 Wigan 18 -14 19
    19 West Ham 20 -13 17
    20 Wolves 18 -13 15

    see also
    Holloway never doubted Blackpool ability
    28 Dec 10 |  Blackpool
    Bruce rues 'ludicrous' schedule
    28 Dec 10 |  Premier League
    Bruce 'puzzled' by fixture congestion
    28 Dec 10 |  Sunderland
    Holloway not shocked by Blackpool
    28 Dec 10 |  Blackpool
    Tuesday's football as it happened
    28 Dec 10 |  Football
    Tuesday's football photos
    28 Dec 10 |  Football

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