SAFC U21 0-0 Norwich City U21
Sunderland bounced back from defeat against Middlesbrough to take a well-earned point against an organised Norwich team at the Academy of Light.
The match was a tale of two defences with both teams defending in numbers letting little get past them during a tense 90 minutes.
After a cagey opening 15 minutes, Norwich carved out the game’s first opportunity when midfielder Ben Watt tried his luck from 20 yards out, but Jacob Carney comfortably collected his shot.
The visitors continued to apply the pressure and came inches from opening the scoring when Harry Brook’s curling effort from out on the left came crashing back off Carney’s crossbar.
Sunderland came close to taking the lead when Ethan Moore’s perfectly timed cross from the right fell to the feet of Ellis Taylor inside the box, but the Norwich defence managed to make a last-ditch block to clear the danger.
The hosts squandered a great chance on the stroke of half time when Nathan Newell advanced past his man and picked out Tom Scott on the edge of the box – Scott’s first time shot cleared McCracken’s crossbar.
Sunderland started the second half as they finished the first on the attack, but Scott dragged his attempt from outside the box wide of McCracken’s far post.
Moore was next to come close to finding the back of the net after Sunderland broke down the left, but Ellis Taylor’s floated cross was an inch too high for Moore to direct the ball towards McCracken’s goal.
In a game of few chances Sunderland kept pushing forward in the final few minutes to find a breakthrough goal, but Norwich held firm to claim a point.
SAFC U21: Carney, Wilson, Crompton, Johnson (Fieldson 60’), Newall, Burke (Chiabi 68’), Scott, Kelly, Moore, Taylor ©, Thompson (Robinson 68’).
Subs not used: Bond, Pye.