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Sunderland

Defoe sparks Sunderland into life

Sunderland
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Black Cats seek Cup inspiration

Sunderland
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Blunt Black Cats in trouble

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Win over Toon a distant memory

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Sunderland surge up the table for now but work still to do for Gus Poyet

Sunderland boss Gus Poyet hailed Burnley's display despite seeing his Black Cats side beat them 2-0 at the Stadium of Light.

Sunderland managed a 2-0 win over Burnley, earn the applause of the crowd and avoid yet another "last place" on Match of the Day, the Saturday night football highlights show. That meant a cause for some satisfaction on Wearside.

After last week's awful performance against Fulham in the FA Cup, Sunderland head coach Gus Poyet changed the formation yet again. From 3-2-5 against the west Londoners, the formation went to a fluid 4-3-3 against the east Lancastrians and it worked.

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BurnleyBurnley
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Full backs Anthony...

Gus Poyet and Sunderland need strong homestand starting with Burnley

The arrival of Jermain Defoe was exciting for Sunderland fans, but unless the Black Cats figure out how to give the striker quality service, his presence is mere window dressing.

And so we arrive at the first six-pointer of the season, as a stumbling Sunderland side take on a Burnley team that has had a couple of blips of their own recently. Goal difference separates the two sides in the Premier League table, and it is feasible that the same will apply at teatime on Saturday.

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BurnleyBurnley
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For the Wearsiders, this starts a run of three home games against clubs that are in the same predicament, and it is deemed essential by supporters that this run starts with a home win. Saturday...

Sunderland looking for FA Cup inspiration to turn season around

Sunderland coach Gus Poyet has backed new signing Jermain Defoe to be a hit at the Stadium of Light.

After the disappointment of a narrow defeat at Tottenham last Saturday, Sunderland now find themselves in one of those cup ties that seems to pass people by -- a home draw against competent but hardly inspiring Championship opponents.

Ticket sales have been sluggish and a crowd that has usually been around 40,000 is more likely to be half that, despite the reduction in prices which seems obligatory in the early rounds of the FA Cup. The visitors' section is not likely to be over busy either.

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FulhamFulham
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Both...

Jermain Defoe denied a debut goal as Sunderland slip further into trouble

Jermain Defoe had a disappointing return to White Hart Lane as his Sunderland side slipped to a 2-1 defeat at Tottenham.

On a day when Jermain Defoe failed to maintain his record of always scoring on debuts, an out-of-favour Sunderland striker missed two chances that could have turned a 2-1 defeat into victory over Defoe's former club Tottenham.

Danny Graham, Defoe's substitute, twice found himself in good positions only for the excellent Hugo Lloris to deny him in the Spurs goal.

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Graham's stay at Sunderland has been a disaster -- he's without a single goal to his name since his arrival from Swansea City two years...

Surging Tottenham spoil Jermain Defoe's return to the Prem

LONDON -- Three thoughts on Tottenham's 2-1 win over Sunderland at White Hart Lane on Saturday.

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1. Defoe can't save Sunderland on his own

It may prove to be a gamble that pays off as the season develops, but the signing of Jermain Defoe from MLS side Toronto FC brought no instant reward for Sunderland.

On his return to White Hart Lane, the 32-year-old striker huffed and puffed, but to little effect. He left the pitch in the 75th minute, having first removed himself from the pocket of centre-back...

Jozy Altidore, Toronto FC to both benefit from Jermain Defoe swap

ESPN FC's Tommy Smyth and Alexis Nunes weigh in on Jozy Altidore's return to MLS and how it could impact his game.

It came slightly later than expected, but as ESPNFC.com reported, Toronto FC officially announced Friday morning the signing of U.S. national team striker Jozy Altidore as part of a swap deal that sent former England forward Jermain Defoe to Premier League club Sunderland.

"Jozy is a special player, and checks off all of the boxes that we look for," TFC general manager Tim Bezbatchenko said in a statement. "We are excited to finalize this deal."

Lucky, too. A year after trumpeting the ballyhooed...