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Match Reports

Match Report | Sunderland 2-0 Rochdale

6 March 2021

Match Reports

Match Report | Sunderland 2-0 Rochdale

6 March 2021

Rochdale fell to a 2-0 defeat away Sunderland on Saturday, a scoreline which reflects harshly on Dale's performance.

First half goals from Dion Sanderson and Charlie Wyke secured the victory for the clinical hosts at the Stadium of Light. 

There was one change to the side that lined up against Hull City midweek, as Kwadwo Baah came in for Alex Newby. Conor Shaughnessy, who was shown a straight red car at the KCOM Stadium, was available and started the game, after it was overturned following a successful appeal.

The home side opened the scoring early on, as Sanderson headed home from a free-kick to the back post after seven minutes. 

Two minutes later and they could have added a second, however, Jimmy Keohane threw himself in the way of Jordan Jones’ close range effort, denying his goal bound shot. 

Despite going a goal behind during the opening exchanges, Dale grew into the game and had opportunities to level before a clinical Sunderland doubled their advantage. 

With 22 minutes on the clock, Aaron Morley picked out Kwadwo Baah with a ball over the top, and after stretching to get it under his control, the young forward got his shot away, which was blocked.

Soon after, Stephen Humphrys’ strike from the edge of the area was also blocked, while Captain Eoghan O’Connell had a curling effort from 25-yards held by Lee Burge. 

Dale’s best chance of the half fell for Keohane shortly after the half hour mark when he combined with Ryan McLaughlin. Keohane found McLaughlin who drove at his man before delivering into the area for Keohane, who couldn’t keep his shot down and he hit over from six-yards. 

Two minutes later the hosts went up the other end and netted their second of the afternoon. Wyke headed down and beyond Bazunu, having met Jones’ whipped cross in from the right. 

In stoppage time, Paul McShane nodded on a Dale corner, which Conor Grant got a foot onto, but he couldn’t get enough on it to poke it beyond Burge who got down to hold. 


The second period was evenly matched, with Rochdale producing the best opportunity of the half. 

On 57 minutes, Morley fed in Humphrys with a low free-kick and the Dale forward’s strike, which looked to be headed for the bottom corner, was superbly turned round the upright by the Sunderland ‘keeper. 

Dale’s first change of the game came 11 minutes later, when Gabriel Osho made way for Newby. 

There was a lengthy stoppage in play following an injury to the assistant referee, and shortly after play got back under way, Sunderland substitute Chris Maguire hit a free-kick narrowly wide of the post. 

Shaughnessy tested Burge with a volley from the edge of the area, and after initially spilling, the goalkeeper collected at the second attempt. 

A second Rochdale change followed, as Matty Done replaced Ryan McLaughlin, before the game was out. 


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