Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Sunderland Hold on to 100% Win Record with Help from Kirchhoff; THE MATCH: Dijon FCO 2 Sunderland 3

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Sunderland Hold on to 100% Win Record with Help from Kirchhoff; THE MATCH: Dijon FCO 2 Sunderland 3

Article excerpt

Byline: James Hunter Sports writer Twitter: @JHUNTERCHRON

JAN Kirchhoff made his pre-season debut as Sunderland kept up their 100% record with a win over Dijon.

The German midfielder had sat out the Black Cats' first three friendlies as a precaution after picking up a minor knock, but he completed the full 90 minutes against the French side at Stade Camille-Fournier in Evian-les-Bains.

New boss David Moyes was able to run the rule over the former Bayern Munich man, who played a key role in keeping Sunderland in the Premier League last term when he joined mid-season.

The Black Cats were twice pegged back after taking the lead against Dijon, with teenager Joel Asoro putting them ahead early in the game on his first start for the club only for Dylan Bahamboula to cancel that out just after half-time.

Asoro then provided the assist for Wahbi Khazri to restore Sunderland's lead, but this time it was sub Jeremie Bela who equalised.

But after Fabio Borini scored from the penalty spot late on, Sunderland closed the game out.

After playing midfielder Jack Rodwell at centre-back in the previous game, Moyes again demonstrated the ex-Everton man's versatility by shifting him to right-back against Dijon.

And with Jermain Defoe absent for a second successive game, he also started 17-year-old Asoro just two days after the youngster made his first senior appearance in a Sunderland shirt as a sub.

Dijon included former Newcastle United winger Romain Amalfitano in their side, but he was substituted before half-time.

The first half was tame, with Sunderland just about shading it.

They certainly created the better chances, with Dijon keeper Reynet Baptiste forced into a smart save on five minutes to beat away Khazri's left-wing free-kick which was curling inside the near post.

But Asoro made the breakthrough on the quarter-hour.

He pressurised Jordan Loties into a mistake, with the centre-back scuffing a backpass to the keeper and Asoro was on to it in a flash and steered his finish beyond Baptiste and in off the foot of the far post. …

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