Sunderland 3-1 Crewe
By Andy Clarke
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Goals from Carl Robinson, Marcus Stewart and Stephen Elliott gave Sunderland their first win of the season against Crewe.
Goals from Carl Robinson, Marcus Stewart and Stephen Elliott gave Sunderland a comfortable victory over Crewe at The Stadium of Light.
Mick McCarthy's side, beaten 2-0 at Coventry on the opening day, were always in command although they were pegged back shortly before the break as Mark Rivers cancelled out Robinson's opener.
Crewe had an early chance when Thomas Myhre reacted well to keep out a Dean Ashton shot, but it was the home side who were dictating the play and they took the lead after 12 minutes.
Liam Lawrence's free kick was headed clear to the edge of the area, where Robinson chested the ball down before beating Ben Williams with a half volley which took a slight deflection.
Stewart headed wide from a Lawrence cross when he should have done better, then the former Ipswich man teed up Jeff Whitley for a simple chance, but the midfielder somehow placed his shot wide from six yards.
Sunderland were made to pay when Ashton broke clear down the left on 43 minutes and crossed for Rivers to turn in his first goal since returning to The Alex from Norwich.
Stewart squandered another good chance when he took too many touches in the area after good work from Julio Arca, but he made amends on 67 minutes when he beat Richard Walker to Kevin Kyle's cross and beat Williams at his near post with a first-time shot.
Substitute Elliott, a summer signing from Manchester City, then set the seal on Sunderland's win with a fine solo goal in the last minute, cutting in from the right before showing great composure to side-foot a shot beyond Williams.