Ethan's Report: Grayson grab(ban)s Sunderland's first three points of the season


Sunderland made the long journey to East Anglia for the Sunday game against Thomas Farke's Norwich. The Canaries had only lost once at Carrow Road in 2017, against Slavisa Jokanovic's Fulham in April. 


Sunderland on the other hand had only won 2 league games in 2017, both away, against Crystal Palace and Hull City.  Simon Grayson stayed faithful to Jason Steele as the Newton Aycliffe born goalkeeper started his 4th consecutive game for the Black Cats. 

Norwich enjoyed most of the possession but never really threatened Steele's goal in the first half, a Cameron Jerome potshot was about as close as they got before striker Lewis Grabban shook off a defender and thrashed a shot at Gunn's goal only to hit the side netting. Jerome did put the ball in the net after a ball from Naismith but the former Birmingham City striker was judged to be offside. 

The next time the ball would end up in the net was shortly after when a long kick by Steele was flicked on by Vaughan for strike partner Grabban to finish first time from just inside, the ball squeezed through Angus Gunn's legs. 

Sunderland really grew into the game and although Norwich enjoyed most of the possession it was the Wearsiders who created the chances; Lee Cattermole played a free kick into the area which caught the Canaries' defence off guard only for the ball to pass inches in front of winger George Honeyman. Norwich came reasonably close with half chances from set pieces, first Jerome's header flashed just wide of the helpless Steele then captain Russell Martin's diving header from the corner - although if he'd left it, it was falling for the unmarked Jerome. 

The visitor's second came from George Honeyman's corner, though initially it didn't cause problems but the headed clearance was brought down by Cattermole who fed Aiden McGeady. The Irishman unleashed an absolute peach of shot into the top right corner to double the visitors' lead. 

Ten minutes later Lewis Grabban dispatched a delightful McGeady cross from four yards out after the man of the moment was unmarked at the far post. Norwich did get a goal back after Oliviera won a free kick which was whipped in knocked across goal, past the goalkeeper Steele and the last touch came off Grabban in the goalmouth scramble. James Husband then forced Steele into a double save making the former Boro stopper dive to his left before Martin leathered a shot at goal for Steele to stop it again. 

Sunderland pick up their first 3 points of the Championship campaign, with an overall happy return to his former stomping ground for the on loan Bournemouth striker Grabban. Norwich hope to follow in the footsteps of Huddersfield Town who last season were promoted after appointing Borussia Dortmund's youth team manager David Wagner, this season the Canaries replaced Alex Neil with former Dortmund youth team boss Thomas Farke in hope of similar success - but it was English gaffer Grayson who came out the victor.  

Sunderland Quick Ratings;
Steele: 8, Jones: 7, Browning: 7, Koné: 7, Galloway: 7, Cattermole: 8 (Gibson '74), Ndong: 8, McGeady: 9 (Gooch '84), Honeyman: 8, Vaughan: 7, Grabban: 9 (O'Shea '87) 


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