Manchester City put their four-year Stadium of Light hoodoo firmly to rest by running out convincing 4-1 winners, thanks mainly to a pretty special Sergio Aguero performance.
Sunderland had started brightly, with Seb Larsson brilliantly threading a pass through for Connor Wickham to bundle to ball into Joe Hart's net.
That was as good as it got for Gus Poyet's men, though. Within two minutes, City were level. Aguero picked the ball up in the Sunderland half, nutmegged Sebastian Coates, and raked a stunner into the top corner.
From there on in, Man City were rampant. They held the ball, they passed and the probed. It seemed a matter of time before they took the lead, and soon enough they did. Yaya Toure fizzed a pass into Aguero who, with one touch, put it on a plate for Stevan Jovetic to fire home.
Sunderland had a little go after half time, but the third City goal, a neat Pablo Zabaleta chip was the killer. By the time Aguero slotted home a fourth from James Milner's cross, the game was long gone.
So the hoodoo - fun whilst it lasted - is over, but there can't be any complaints. The champions were just too good on the night. I'm sure the lads will take it on the chin and look forward to some much kinder home fixtures in the new year.