Sunderland snatch draw
Sunderland v West Brom (Getty Images)
Sunderland - Sunderland fought back from a disastrous opening spell to force a 2-2 draw with West Brom and relieve the pressure on Black Cats manager Steve Bruce on Saturday.
Bruce's position at Sunderland has come under scrutiny after a disappointing run of results including a 2-1 loss at Norwich on Monday which left his team hovering just above the relegation zone.
And after five catastrophic opening minutes on Saturday, Bruce must have felt like averting his eyes as West Brom raced into a 2-0 lead with goals from James Morrison and Shane Long.
That double strike was the cue for a chorus of "Bruce Out" to reverberate around the Stadium of Light with Sunderland seemingly headed for what would have been their fourth defeat of the season.
However, Sunderland were swift to recover from the shock of falling behind, and began to take the game to the Baggies.
They were given hope on 24 minutes when summer signing Nicklas Bendtner netted his first goal for the club since arriving from Arsenal.
The Danish international made it 2-1 when his shot deflected off Gareth McAuley past Ben Foster after good work by Sebastian Larsson and Stephane Sessegnon.
Bendtner then turned provider two minutes later, crossing for Ahmed Elmohamady to head in the equaliser and make it 2-2 in a chaotic opening half hour.
Thereafter Sunderland created good chances to take the lead, with Craig Gardner testing Foster near half-time.
But Bruce's men always appeared vulnerable at the back where Long and Peter Odemwingie repeatedly caused problems for Wes Brown and Michael Turner.
Elomhamady had a good chance to snatch all three points for Sunderland on 59 minutes after being played in by Sessegnon but Foster was equal to the challenge with a fine block.