Sunderland went some way to addressing their poor home form as they demolished Stoke 4-0 at the Stadium of Light.
Previous to this game Sunderland had lost eight of their previous nine home games but they made Stoke pay for their defensive frailties.
Titus Bramble opened the scoring early on to settle the nerves following some poor goalkeeping from Asmir Begovic, followed almost immediately by number two when Jonathan Woodgate was the unfortunate defender to head into his own net.
Just before the half-hour the game was as good as over. A brilliant Black Cats move instigated by the impressive Nicklas Bendtner ended with Craig Gardener’s effort deflecting home via Ryan Shawcross.
Sebastian Larsson with a sensational free-kick made it four after the break and eased some of the pressure from under-fire boss Steve Bruce.
Referee: Kevin Friend
Venue: Stadium of Light
Sunderland scorers: Bramble 5, Woodgate (og) 11, Gardner 28, Larsson 58
TRIBAL ASKS: Will the Sunderland fans be as effusive in their praise of boss Steve Bruce as they have vilified him after only five games?
Yellow cards: Larsson (SUN), Huth (STO), Crouch (STO)