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Barclays Premier League

Stadium of Light (ATT 37,128) 24th March 2012 - Kick off 15:00 Ref: M Jones

S'land Sunderland vs Queens Park Rangers QPR

S'land 3

N Bendtner (41)
J McClean (70)
S Sessegnon (76)



D Cisse (S/O 55)
T Taiwo (79)

McClean makes Black Cats roar

Full-back's free-kick not enough to spur Rs comeback

By Hayley Paterson.   Last Updated: 24/03/12 7:45pm

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James McClean was in rampant form against 10-man Queens Park Rangers after having a hand in all three of Sunderland's goals as Djibril Cisse saw red for the visitors.

The Irishman, celebrating a contract extension at the Stadium of Light, first delivered a beautiful cross on to the head of masked marksman Nicklas Bendtner who rose above Taye Taiwo.

McClean then laid the ball off to David Vaughan after the interval who drilled a perfect cross into Stephane Sessegnon's path to slide home.

The Black Cats youngster later showed great persistence to fire past Paddy Kenny after seeing his first strike in the box blocked by a luckless Luke Young.

In the midst of all those goals, Cisse was given a straight red for a terrible two-footed challenge on substitute Fraizer Campbell. Mark Hughes later barely broke a smile when Taiwo curled in a free-kick into the top corner which was mere consolation for the visitors.

Man of the match: James McClean caused QPR all kinds of problems. The visitors just could not cope with the Irishman's pace, persistence and goal threat. Moment of the match: Djibril Cisse's sending off. It was pure stupidity from the forward who can have little to complain about after being given a straight red for a two-footed lunge on Fraizer Campbell. Goal of the game: Sunderland's second was superbly worked. From McClean's cute lay-off into David Vaughan's pass who then fired in a perfectly-weighted cross towards Stephane Sessegnon for him to slide the ball past Paddy Kenny. Talking point: With QPR seemingly throwing away points on their travels, will they be able to turn around that form to help secure their Premier League survival?

In the build-up to the game on Wearside, all talk was of Hughes dropping skipper Joey Barton to the QPR bench following a midweek performance against Liverpool which led to his own fans booing the much-maligned midfielder when he was substituted.

On the pitch, Barton's absence meant Wednesday's match-winner Jamie Mackie earned a start for the visitors but it was Sunderland who sprinted out of the blocks, enjoying the better spells of possession.

Glorious opportunities

Jack Colback had passed up two glorious opportunities within a minute of one another as he failed to convert his side-footed effort from close range and then saw his half-volley brush against Kenny's right-hand post.

Sessegnon, back after a three-match ban following his dismissal against Newcastle, was also lively throughout but his rustiness proved to be the problem seven minutes later when he struck a poor effort which failed to trouble Kenny.

The Benin international's effort came seconds after Cisse had seen a rare effort blocked by O'Shea, but the defender's afternoon came to a premature conclusion five minutes later when he limped off with a calf injury.

Tempers flared on the pitch when Sotirios Kyrgiakos and Bobby Zamora clashed with the striker appearing to suggest he had been head-butted. Mike Jones eventually booked the pair.

The opener came with four minutes remaining as McClean threatened once more down the left and delivered a dangerous ball towards the far post for Bendtner to climb high above Taiwo and head firmly into the corner.

A frustrated Adel Taarabt wasted a chance to equalise later when he drilled an ambitious free-kick straight into the defensive wall.

Craig Gardner, who switched to right-back in the absence of stand-in skipper O'Shea, showed endeavour down the flank and with 48 minutes gone he overhit his cross which then saw Vaughan blast high over seconds later.

Straight red

However, the visitors' plight deepened a minute later when former Sunderland striker Cisse was shown a straight red card for an unsavoury lunge on Campbell.

Sessegnon then tried to capitalise on his side's numerical advantage when he broke clear just before the hour mark but shot high and wide.

The tie was effectively over 20 minutes from time as Nedum Onuoha was caught under the ball, and McClean nipped in and after seeing Young block his initial effort, the winger thumped the rebound past Kenny with the help of a deflection.

The visitors' fortune took a turn for the worse as minutes later Sessegnon slid home Vaughan's cross from close range to make it 3-0.

Taiwo responded with a superb 79th minute set-piece, however their midweek last-gasp heroics against Liverpool were not repeated as the North East outfit claimed all three points.

SunderlandTeam StatisticsQueens Park Rangers
11st Half Goals0
4Shots on Target1
8Shots off Target5
5Blocked Shots5
2Yellow Cards3
0Red Cards1
76.6Passing Success73.2
62.5Tackles Success66.7
54.2Territorial Advantage45.8
428Total Passes403
24Total Crosses14
176Lost Balls176
54.31st Half Poss.45.7
48.52nd Half Poss.51.5

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Barclays Premier League

Barclays Premier League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Chelsea 38 87
2 Manchester City 38 79
3 Arsenal 38 75
4 Manchester United 38 70
5 Tottenham Hotspur 38 64
6 Liverpool 38 62
7 Southampton 38 60
8 Swansea City 38 56
9 Stoke City 38 54
10 Crystal Palace 38 48
11 Everton 38 47
12 West Ham United 38 47
13 West Bromwich Albion 38 44
14 Leicester City 38 41
15 Newcastle United 38 39
16 Sunderland 38 38
17 Aston Villa 38 38
18 Hull City 38 35
19 Burnley 38 33
20 Queens Park Rangers 38 30


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