REPORT: Sunderland 2 Wigan Athletic 1

Wigan Athletic kicked off their League One campaign on a losing note after Sunderland came from behind to win at the Stadium of Light.

Saturday, 7th August 2021, 5:15 pm
Updated Saturday, 7th August 2021, 5:16 pm
Gwion Edwards' early goal wasn't enough for Latics to get anything on opening day at Sunderland

Latics started the game well with new skipper Tendayi Darkiwa, Gwion Edwards and Max Power - one of three players returning to their old stomping ground - having shots blocked in the space of five seconds during a mad scramble in the home box.

And the visitors did hit the front on 16 minutes, when Will Keane's stinging shot hit the post, and Edwards followed up to guide the ball into the far corner.

Edwards had scored for Ipswich against Latics on the opening day of last season, but sadly the lead didn't last long.

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Barely a minute later Ross Stewart went to ground in the Wigan box under a challenge from Darikwa, and referee Bobby Madley pointed straight to the spot.

Aiden McGeady sent Ben Amos - preferred to Jamie Jones in goal - the wrong way to level the scores.

And Latics had to withstand a spell of concerted pressure from Sunderland, with Tom Pearce producing a fabulous block to divert a goalbound effort, with Amos on the deck.

At the other end, Power fired over from a good position, but the visitors would have been relatively happy to go into the break on level terms.

That all changed within eight minutes of the restart, with Stewart finding himself free to nod home an inswinging right-wing corner.

And Latics had a massive let-off when Lynden Gooch's shot hit the stanchion and flew away to safety.

On a rare sortie into Sunderland territory, Edwards elected not to play in Charlie Wyke - who was receiving dog's abuse from the home fans, having turned down a new deal to join Latics over the summer.

However, Edwards' shot from 20 yards was parried away to safety, and he might feel he should have played the pass.

Latics threw on new-boys Jordan Jones, Stephen Humphrys and Jordan Cousins in the final quarter in a desperate attempt to get back into the game.

But the home side were able to see out the closing stages - including six added minutes - without too much alarm.

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