Belfast Telegraph

Bent snatches late point

Darren Bent left it late to deny 10-man Arsenal victory at Sunderland with a 95th-minute equaliser to snatch a 1-1 draw.

The England international struck amid a goalmouth scramble as the Black Cats launched one final attack. Until that point, it had looked as though Cesc Fabregas' freak goal would be enough to hand the visitors a hard-fought win.

The Spaniard's 13th-minute block sent Anton Ferdinand's attempted clearance sailing over the head of stranded goalkeeper Simon Mignolet and into the net. But the Gunners had only themselves to blame after having midfielder Alex Song sent off for a second bookable offence, while substitute Tomas Rosicky missed a 74th-minute penalty.

The game was 13 minutes old when Fabregas closed down central defender Ferdinand. But even he could not believe his eyes when the ball cannoned back off him and looped into the net.

Sunderland might have been back on level terms within two minutes when Nedum Onuoha met Jordan Henderson's corner, but he powered his header over.

Mignolet had to produce solid saves to deny first Song and then Andrey Arshavin but Danny Welbeck smashed a first-time shot just wide within seconds of the restart.

Arshavin then clipped a 47th-minute Marouane Chamakh cross over the bar before he squandered a gilt-edged chance after Song had picked him out.

Sunderland got a break three minutes later when Song, who had earlier been cautioned for a foul on Henderson, was shown a second booking and was dismissed.

The home side should have made their numerical advantage count and Rosicky had a chance to wrap up the victory with 16 minutes left when Samir Nasri was tripped inside the box. However, the Czech blazed over from the penalty spot.

And salvation arrived deep for Sunderland deep into added time when Gael Clichy's clearance dropped perfectly for Bent to smash the ball home.


From Belfast Telegraph