Late penalty drama gives Sunderland a deserved point against Luton Town
Sunderland scored a late penalty to draw 1-1 with Luton Town at the Stadium of Light in the Sky Bet Championship.
After a quiet first half, the Hatters broke the deadlock in the early stages of the second through Alfie Doughty. The hosts levelled late on thanks to Amad’s empathic spot-kick to share the points.
The Black Cats carved out the first opportunity of the match in the opening 20 minutes, Jack Clarke drifted past his man down the left-hand side, squaring the ball to Dan Neil to drill his shot off Ethan Horvath’s upright from the edge of the box.
Patrick Roberts was next to cause the visitors a problem, the winger skipped past his man and delivered an inch-perfect cross for Joe Gelhardt but Horvath was quick to intercept and clear the danger.
There was little to talk about in the first half with the hosts the more dangerous of the two sides.
Anthony Patterson was called into action within five minutes of the restart to keep the scores level after an unmarked Doughty was released down the left-hand side.
Luton took the lead on 51 minutes, Doughty’s quickly taken free kick was fired through a crowd of bodies giving Patterson little hope of stopping the midfielder’s deflected shot.
Sunderland almost instantly got themselves back on level terms, Luke O’Nien’s effort from 12 yards out forcing Horvath into a neat save.
The hosts looked dangerous on the counterattack, Gelhardt this time collecting Clarke’s ball inside the visitor’s box, but his attempt rolled agonisingly wide of Horvath’s far post.
The Black Cats deservedly equalised from the spot inside the final five minutes through substitute Amad. Referee Scott Oldham awarded the hosts a penalty after Amari’i Bell was adjudged to have pulled the Ivorian’s shirt.
The home team continued to drive forward in a frantic ending to the match, but Luton held firm to deny Sunderland a winning goal.
Tony Mowbray’s side will return after the international break to face table-topping Burnley at Turf Moor in the Sky Bet Championship.
Sunderland XI: Patterson, Hume (Pritchard 71’), Batth ©, Ballard, O’Nien, Michut (Gooch 72’), Neil (Bennette 72’), Roberts, Ba (Amad 54’), Clarke, Gelhardt (Ekwah 71’)
Subs not used: Bass, Lihadji.
Luton Town XI: Horvath, Drameh, Lockyer ©, Bell, Osho, Berry (Clark 57’), Nakamba, Campbell, Doughty (Onyedinma 75’), Morris, Adebayo (Woodrow 83’)
Subs not used: Shea, Lansbury, Burke, Taylor.