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On This Day (16th November 1957): Sunderland play out an entertaining 2-2 draw with Chelsea!

With the club a mess off the pitch, Sunderland struggled throughout the 1957/58 season - but a rare entertaining afternoon for the Lads saw them play out a 2-2 draw with Chelsea at Roker Park.

The erratic nature of Sunderland’s form the previous season left people cautious and anxious for what was to come in the 1957-58 campaign.

The club was shambles on and off the pitch leading to many people becoming disillusioned with the goings on at the club. Sunderland were guilty of making illegal payments to players without highlighting them in their accounts.

Embarrassing defeats like the 8-1 defeat against Darlington in the Durham Senior Professional Cup along with wholesale changes at the club made it certain that apathy and negativity were not going to be so far away.

Bill Murray departed the club in less than ideal circumstances leading to the appointment of Alan Brown as manager. Brown’s style of management was as gentle as a hammer crashing through a window ensuring that his style was imposed immediately.

Soccer - Football League Division One - Sunderland Photo by Barratts/PA Images via Getty Images

His strictness ensured players knew where they stood, with many legendary players departing the club - most notably Len Shackleton.

The ending of one legendary player's career at Wearside coincided with the beginning of another with Irish defender Charlie Hurley signing from Millwall for £18,000.

The season was forgettable from start to finish. Think 19 points, 15 points and David Moyes - this was up there but it was the additional shock that it was the first time the club was relegated that left fans bereft and bewildered more than anything else.

In a season of many mishaps and misfortunes, the 2-2 draw that occurred on this day against Chelsea at Roker Park was one of very few decent occasions.

An attendance of 32,678 hardy souls arrived at Roker Park in hope. The previous five games saw the team unbeaten - though only one of the previous five was a win, against Birmingham City.

Soccer - Football League Division One - Chelsea v Sunderland Photo by Barratts/PA Images via Getty Images

They had reasons for optimism after a first half performance that saw the team score twice but also concede twice leaving the score 2-2 at the break.

According to the Absolute Record, the two goals came three minutes either side of the half-hour mark giving the Lads a 2-0 lead.

All the goals came in the first half with Sunderland taking a two-goal lead with two goals in three minutes either side of the half hour mark. Amby Fogarty marked his home debut by finishing off an Alan O’Neill pass and before the Blues could recover, Billy Bingham headed home a Billy Elliott cross to make it 2-0.

The lead didn’t last long as four minutes later Jim Lewis scored for Ted Drake’s side before Les Stubbs made it 2-2 just before the half time whistle. Both goals came from players who had previous experience of scoring against us.

After Billy Elliott's own goal was ruled out for a foul on the Sunderland defender, the home team can count themselves very unlucky not to have secured the three points.

Chelsea and England goalkeeper Reg Matthews was having a fantastic game making an abundance of saves with the pivotal moment of the game coming in the 77th minute when the goalkeeper saved brilliantly from Don Revie to add another almost moment to a season of never-ending disappointments.

Sunderland: Fraser, Hedley, Elliott, Anderson, Hurley, Aitken, Bingham, Revie, O’Neill, Fogarty, Grainger.


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