Birmingham - Sunderland slumped to the bottom of the Premier League despite
battling back for a 2-2 draw at Aston Villa thanks to Jeremain Lens's
equaliser on Saturday.
Dick Advocaat's side led through Yann
M'Vila's superb free-kick but a Scott Sinclair double before half-time
turned the game on its head.
Lens levelled for Sunderland early in
the second half, yet the Black Cats still headed back to Wearside
rooted to the bottom of the table with just two points after four league
games without a win.
Sunderland went ahead after eight minutes
through M'Vila's free-kick, a curling shot around the Villa wall that
left Brad Guzan with no chance.
But the lead lasted just three
minutes as Lee Cattermole clumsily leant over the top of Sinclair and
referee Robert Madley pointed to the penalty spot.
Sinclair took the spot-kick himself and tucked the ball away into the left-hand side of the net.
were in the ascendancy and Sinclair went close again before Ashley
Westwood's first-time shot from the right side of the area flew just
Tim Sherwood's team made their pressure pay four minutes
before half-time when Idrissa Gueye set Jordan Amavi free down the left
and Sinclair got between two defenders to divert his low cross into the
roof of the net.
At half-time, Advocaat replaced Danny Graham and
Cattermole with Steven Fletcher and Ola Toivonen, on for his debut
following his loan arrival this week from Rennes.
Fletcher was involved straight away, with his header having to be tipped over the crossbar by Guzan.
In the 52nd minute, Toivonen's threaded through ball found Lens, who turned Ciaran Clark and fired his shot beyond Guzan.
somehow squandered the chance of a second hat-trick in four days as he
got on the end of Gueye's driven cross, but the ball struck his body
just a couple of yards from goal and ricocheted to Costel Pantilimon.
thought they had a penalty 10 minutes from time when substitute Carles
Gil went down under a challenge from Younes Kaboul, but the referee
booked the Villa man for diving.