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West Bromwich Albion 2-2 Sunderland: Black Cats rally to steal point

Lee Cattermole put Sunderland ahead but Gus Poyet’s Sunderland needed a late equalizer from Seb Larsson to seize a share of the points versus West Bromwich Albion in a 2-2 draw on opening day.

Saido Berahino scored both goals for the Baggies.

Black Cats keeper Vito Mannone was tested early, forced to make a physical play just outside his six to collect a cross.

It would’t be the last time the Sunderland goal was tested. Lee Cattermole was one of a pair of Black Cats to clatter into Saido Berahino in the fourth-minute, in what would’ve been a controversial opening day penalty.

Cattermole turned goal scorer less than a minute later, when he latched onto a clearance five yards outside the box and lashed it past Foster to make it 1-0. The goal was just his second in 102 PL appearances for Sunderland, though his first was last year against Spurs.

West Brom earned a pair of 18th minute corners, but the first was parried by Mannone and the second cleared after Jonas Olsson was kept from leaping to meet it.

Anichebe won a pretty soft penalty, going to ground after Valentin Roberge nudged the West Ham attacker. Berahino buried his chance to make it 1-1 heading into half.

Steven Fletcher had the second half’s best chance, scoring before being ruled a hair offside (but offside nonetheless).

And then Berahino found his second, tapping in a cross from former Sunderland favorite Gardner in the 73rd minute.

Sunderland equalized in the 85th minute, with Larsson darting into the 18 to tap home a solid run from new Black Cats back Patrick van Aanholt.

Five minutes of stoppage time couldn’t separate the clubs.

-- Nicholas Mendola, ProSoccerTalk.com

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