Sunderland got the better of their Jock opponents in a game which was, to be honest, forgettable. A strong Sunderland side huffed and puffed their way to a 2-1 win over Kilmarnock, or should we say it Kilmarnock Reserves as their side contained the three A Trialist brothers, and only one of the team who started in the SPL last Saturday.
Brucey said after the game it "was a good run-out" and quite right you are Sir, but can we start seeing one or two performances now? It's been five games.
Anyway, on with the report...As stated earlier, Bruce went with a strong starting eleven, possibly only one or two different to what things will look like on the opening day - Kieren Westwood got his first game between the sticks, whilst the back four was comprised of Phil Bardsley, Kieran Richardson, Anton Ferdinand and Wes Brown. Across the midfield we had Sebastian Larsson, Lee Cattermole, David Vaughan and Steed Malbranque, while in attack Stephane Sessegnon played off Asamoah Gyan.
Stephane Sessegnon played like a man possessed. Minutes after setting up Asamoah Gyan only for him to narrowly miss out, the boy from Benin was at it again with a spectacular overhead kick which went inches wide of the Killie goal, then Sess fired another blast on goal which had the keeper all a fluster.
Sesegnon pretty much ran the show throughout, and was far and away MOTM, as he went on to create chances which were fluffed by David Vaughan and Asamoah Gyan.
Having grown tired of his teammates, Sessegnon thought to himself "alright then I'll bloody score" and he did just that on the half hour. Beating two defenders on the edge of the box, Sess smashed it beyond the Killie Keeper. 1-0 to the good guys.
Sunderland were required to shuffle pack a few minutes later, with Ahmed Elmohamady replacing Phil Bardsley at right-back. Before you start doing cartwheels there Captain Fishpaste, it's just a knock, he'll be fine.
And that's pretty much how we went into half time. 1-0 up, little of note barring Sessegnon but things continued to be a 'good run out'...
Well it was until minutes after the break, when debutant Wes Brown gave away a freekick on the edge of the box, which was expertly curled into the top corner past fellow debutant Kieren Westwood, who had no chance. A shame for both Brown & Westwood, who had both been solid if unspectacular up to that point.
Sunderland were in no mood to settle for 1-1 however. Gyan & Brown went close with headers while that man Sessegnon once again went close to adding to his impressive pre-season scoring record.
Substitutions littered the second half and kind of disrupted the game somewhat, but it was actually someone who had remained on for the full ninety who came closest to breaking through. Sebastian Larsson showing us his wonderous deadball skills with a belter of a freekick which was some how kept out by Killie.
It was to be a substitute who made the breakthrough though, as with fifteen minutes to go Connor Wickham tapped in at the back post following some excellent work by Ahmed Elmohamady.
And from then on it was plain sailing. Kilmarnock nearly hit back with almost the exact same freekick routine, but no joy this time for the Scottish side as the freekick went high and wide.
And that was that. All in all, a decent run out as said, but with the strength of the team out and the standard of opposition it should have been more. Plenty of chances created, which is always a good thing though, and Sessegnon just imperious. If anyone was going to be labelled a "Magnificent Man-God" it would be him. I'm not gonna get too down about things.
Oh, and I know you're all waiting for it - Killie Pie - I believe the correct phrase would be Om Nom Nom Nom. Possibly the highlight of the game.