Touch of Klaas sinks Sunderland
Ajax record Wearside win
Last Updated: August 3, 2008 6:50pm
Sunderland lost their unbeaten pre-season record after going 1-0 to Ajax at the Stadium of Light.
Ajax hit-man Klaas Jan Huntelaar's second-half strike proved the difference between the sides as the Dutch outfit took the spoils.
The Holland forward, linked with a move to England over the summer, lashed home the game's only goal nine minutes into the second period after two good saves from Scotland goalkeeper Craig Gordon.
Roy Keane's side will consider themselves unlucky to have lost after bossing possession, particularly in the latter stages, but the closest they came to a goal was a first half Daryl Murphy effort which struck the outside of the post.
Ajax, making their second trip to the Stadium of Light, had the first real chance in the seventh minute when Gordon instinctively threw out a right hand to block Huntelaar's close-range attempt after good work down the left by Luis Suarez.
The Black Cats' first sight of goal came in the 16th minute when former Bolton striker El-Hadji Diouf slid a neat ball through for Dean Whitehead whose low shot skidded wide of Maarten Stekelenburg's post.
Ten minutes later Whitehead again tried his luck after cutting in from the left, but curled his right-footed shot just wide.
Three minutes before the interval the hosts came within a whisker of taking the lead when Murphy, again supplied by the influential Diouf, curled a left-footed strike which just skimmed the outside of the left-hand upright.
DebutSteed Malbranque, the third Tottenham player to move to Wearside this summer, was handed his Sunderland debut as a half-time replacement for Murphy.
The Frenchman was powerless to prevent his side going behind in the 54th minute, however.
Rasmus Lindgren's initial effort from the left was saved by Gordon, as was Huntelaar's follow-up, but the rebound fell at the feet of the Holland frontman a second time and he lashed high into the net.
Diouf drew a fine save from Stekelenburg with a free-kick from the edge of the area, and Teemu Tainio had a long-range effort blocked by Gabri before Michael Chopra slotted home in vain late on after being flagged offside.
Sun 3rd Aug
AC Milan0 - 5Chelsea
Juventus0 - 3Hamburg
Hearts1 - 0Hull City
Sunderland0 - 1Ajax
Arsenal1 - 0R Madrid
B Dortmund0 - 3Tottenham
Feyenoord1 - 3Celtic
Hannover3 - 1Hertha
Mallorca1 - 0Newcastle
Colorado1 - 2Everton