SUNDERLAND reporter Chris Young delivers his verdict on the performances of Gus Poyet’s side in the opening day draw at the Hawthorns.
Mannone - 6. Looked nervy, particularly on crosses, after being given the nod ahead of summer signing Costel Pantilimon.
Brown - 6. Forced to turn back the clock by being used at right-back due to Santiago Vergini’s late withdrawal. Solid defensively, but rarely got forward.
O’Shea - 7. Decent display at the back, despite being charged with anchoring a reshuffled defensive line.
Roberge 5. Struggled against the physical might of Victor Anichebe, albeit his confidence wasn’t helped by a very soft penalty decision from referee Neil Swarbrick.
Van Aanholt 7 - Excellent going forwards and provided the assist for Larsson’s equaliser. But defensive positioning was inconsistent and was at fault for Berahino’s second.
CATTERMOLE 8 - Stunning strike for only his second ever goal in Sunderland colours. Typically, at the heart of things when the Black Cats improved in the second half.
Larsson 8 - Excellent run and underestimated finish for the leveller. Picked up from where he left off from the end of last season with his work-rate.
Rodwell 6 - Nowhere near match sharp and it told, particularly in the first half. Improved after the break, but needs more games. (Gomez 7 - Excellent through-ball in the run-up to Larsson’s equaliser)
Johnson 6 - Struggled to exert an influence on proceedings, despite swapping flanks, although he did track back well to support Brown (Buckley 6 - A few flashes of his willingness to take on opposition full-backs)
Wickham 6 - Out of position on the wing, yet made the best of it. Should have done better with volley from Larsson corner early in second half.
Fletcher 6 - Some good flashes of control and hold-up play. But lacked support or clear chances, although he did have goal ruled out for offside.
WBA: Foster 6, Wisdom 6, Olsson 6, Dawson 7, Pocognoli 7, GARDNER 8, Mulumbu 7, Dorrans 6, Berahino 8, Brunt 6, Anichebe 7.