LIVE SPORTS BLOG - Saturday, December 8, 2012

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Latest

  • Sunderland v Chelsea, Premier League, 3pm - Scott Wilson reports
  • Peterborough v Middlesbrough, Championship, 3pm - Richard Mason reports
  • Hartlepool United v Stevenage, League One, 3pm - Nick Loughlin reports
  • Newton Aycliffe v Darlington, Ebac Northern League Division One, 3pm - Craig Stoddart reports

5:49pm

Right, we're done here. It's been fun. See you all soon.

5:48pm

5:48pm

5:46pm

It ended 3-2 here at London Road - great result for Middlesbrough who withstood a period of Posh domination to hit a late winner. A very important three points here. On to the Capital One Cup next. Anyone for Swansea?

4:58pm

FT: Hartlepool 0 Stevenage 2.

More chances throughout for Pools, but didn't take them.

From the 90th minute, in 7 minutes of additional time, they had four chances. 

Stevenage took their first chance on target and scored with their second, a penalty from a needless handball by Richards.

It's 20 without a win for Pools now in league and cup, equalling a club record. 

4:39pm

Boro get their noses in front again - this time it's Ishmael Miller, a 74th minute substitute, who gathers the ball 20 yards out, shifts it on to his left foot and rifles a howitzer past Olejnik who, admittedly, should have done better with it.

4:35pm

GOAL: Peterborough 2 Middlesbrough 3 (Miller 76)

4:29pm

Southampton leading against Reading, so #SAFC heading into bottom three for first time this season as things stand.

4:28pm

GOAL: Sunderland 1 (Johnson 66) Chelsea 3

Sunderland give themselves a lifeline as Adam Johnson finds the corner of the net.

James McClean teed up Johnson and the England international fired across Cech and into bottom right-hand corner. 1-3

4:28pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

No hat-trick for Faris Haroun, he's been replaced by Richard Smallwood. 69 played. 2-2

4:28pm

GOAL: Sunderland 1 (Johnson 66) Chelsea 3

Sunderland give themselves a lifeline as Adam Johnson finds the corner of the net.

James McClean teed up Johnson and the England international fired across Cech and into bottom right-hand corner. 1-3

4:27pm

Double sub for Hartlepool  - Walton and James on, Monkhouse and Franks off.

4:19pm

GOAL: Hartlepool 0 Stevenage 2. 

Penalty by Akins on 60 mins. Deep cross was handled in the area by Richards

4:18pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

It's remarkable how Boro have let Posh back into this. They looked home and dry by half an hour in. If you look in the dictionary, under 'squandered', there's a big picture of Tony Mowbray with a face like thunder.

4:13pm

GOAL: Sunderland 0 Chelsea 3 (Mata 49)

Having claimed his second goal from the penalty spot in first-half stoppage-time, Torres came within inches of a hat-trick when his fierce drive hit the left-hand post.

However, Juan Mata was on hand to drill home the rebound and heap yet more misery on Sunderland.

4:12pm

Even stevens here at London Road, that man again - Dwight Gayle - scores his second of the afternoon, bundling home from a corner. Tomlin's corner found Michael Bostwick who nodded on for the Posh striker. He'd gone close moments earlier, firing against Steele's legs.

4:10pm

GOAL: Peterborough 2 (Gayle 52) Middlesbrough 2

4:04pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

Back under way here at London Road, no changes for either side. Peterborough almost got back on level terms when George Thorne's shot whistled wide before the interval, so it's by no means over here. Boro lead 2-1.

3:49pm

HT: Hartlepool 0 Stevenage 1

First - and only - time the visitors have been in the Pools area and they scored. Pools had six decent first-half openings, but didn't take any of them. 

3:47pm

HT: Peterborough United 1 Middlesbrough 2

3:38pm

Posh right back in it with a fine goal. Dwight Gayle scores past Jason Steele after turning Jonathan Woodgate. Boro paying the price for a bit of complacency.

3:37pm

GOAL: Peterborough 1 (Gayle 37) Middlesbrough 2

3:33pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

Still 2-0 to the visitors here. McDonald went close with a shot well gathered by keeper Olejnik, while at the other end, Peterborough have had half-chances courtesy of George Thorne and Lee Tomlin. If you look up the word 'comfortable' there's a picture of Tony Mowbray, smiling. In slippers.

3:30pm

Sunderland having their best spell of the game at the minute, with Petr Cech parrying a fierce strike from Stephane Sessegnon.

Great atmosphere inside Stadium of Light, But Sunderland still trail. 0-1

3:22pm

It's just too easy for Middlesbrough here, they're 2-0 up and cruising. Haroun comes up with the goods again, tapping home from Stuart Parnaby's right-wing cross.

3:21pm

GOAL: 19 mins in and Hartlepool one down to Stevenage. 

Cross from Freeman on the right, met firmly by Marcus Haber which beat Flinders and cracked off the post. 

He then reacted in an instant to get up and push the loose ball in. 

Bit harsh on Pools, Stevenage's first threat in the area. 

3:20pm

GOAL: Peterborough 0 Middlesbrough 2 (Haroun 20)

3:18pm

GOAL: Sunderland 0 Chelsea 1 (Torres 11)

Chelsea get the goal their bright start has deserved. Hazard found space down the left, and Torres stole ahead of O'Shea to score with an instinctive volley.

3:17pm

Two chances in a minute for Hartlepool.

Pools look fresh and alert after a two-week break. Playing some nice stuff. 

First chance, a 25 yard raker from Jordan Richards which keeper Steve Arnold palmed away. Seconds later, Evan Horwood cross and Charlie Wyke glancing header kept out. 

3:16pm

Fernando Torres ends his 12 and a half hour drought in the Premier League to volley home Eden Hazard's cross for the first of the afternoon.

3:14pm

GOAL: Sunderland 0 Chelsea 1 (Torres 11)

3:12pm

Superb start for Middlesbrough. From a Peterborough corner, Boro cleared, and a perfect crossfield ball by Ledesma found McDonald on the right. The Australian cut inside to Haroun who clipped a left-footed shot into the bottom right corner. If you look in the dictionary for the term counter-attack, there's a big picture of Tony Mowbray, smiling.

3:10pm

GOAL: Peterborough 0 Middlesbrough 1 (Haroun 9)

3:10pm

Very bright start from Chelsea here at Sunderland, with Simon Mignolet already saving from Fernando Torres. Eden Hazard and Juan Mata both look on it already, which is ominous. 0-0

3:06pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

We're under way here at London Road, and, as expected, Boro are going 4-4-2, with Haroun and Ledesma wide left and right respectively. Boro on the ball now after a bright start from the hosts.

3:05pm

Updates from Sunderland will be sparse and sporadic owing to connection issues. I imagine it will be back up and running once they've re-attached the yoghurt pots with string and fed the pigeons.

2:56pm

2:50pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

Approaching kick-off here, away end looking very lively. Boro evens with the bookies to take a result here. Looking at Peterborough's record, that seems like easy money. But the unpredictable Championship is not exactly punter-friendly.

2:41pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

Fairly attacking line-up from Middlesbrough, but it's at the back where they get the biggest boost, with Jonathan Woodgate recovering from injury in time to play this afternoon. Faris Haroun also returns, while the game has come too soon for hamstrung George Friend. It's an attacking four of Haroun, Emmanuel Ledesma, Scott McDonald and Marvin Emnes. All four will interchange throughout.

2:34pm

Nick Loughlin, Hartlepool v Stevenage

HARTLEPOOL United skipper Peter Hartley misses out this afternoon with conjunctivitis as they meet Stevenage seeking only their second win of the season.
Jack Baldwin replaces him and Ritchie Humphreys takes over the captain’s armband.
Paul Murray is on the bench, with Charlie Wyke starting for the first time.
HARTLEPOOL UNITED: Flinders; Richards, Collins, Baldwin, Horwood; Franks, Sweeney, Humphreys, Monkhouse; Howard, Wyke. Subs: McHugh (gk), Walton, Poole, Murray, Johnson, James, Noble.
STEVENAGE: Arnold; Gray, Tansey, Grant, Dunne, Haber, Akins, Roberts, Freeman, Comminges, N’Gala. Subs: Hills, Day, Ball, Rogers, Agyemang, Risser, Shroot.
Referee: Rob Madley (Osset)

2:29pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

PETERBOROUGH UNITED: Olejnik, Zakuani, Bostwick, Tomlin, Boyd, Rowe, Newell, Little, Knight-Percival, Thorne, Gayle. Subs: Day, Alcock, Brisley, Swanson, McCann, Kearns, Ferdinand.

MIDDLESBROUGH (4-4-2): Steele; Parnaby, Bikey, Woodgate, Halliday; Ledesma, Leadbitter, McEachran, Haroun; Emnes, McDonald. Subs: Leutwiler, Thomson, Bailey, Hines, Jutkiewicz, Smallwood.

2:07pm

Sunderland have confirmed Connor Wickham will start this afternoon - here's what O'Neill had to say about him earlier this week.

2:04pm

1:57pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

We'll give you team news as we get it, the team have arrived and are about to take to the pitch to warm up. Expecting more than 1,500 Boro fans making the trip down to London Road today. Most of them appeared to be on the same train as me. Think I've got drunk on their fumes.

1:55pm

1:55pm

Richard Mason, Peterborough v Middlesbrough, London Road:

Good afternoon and welcome to The Northern Echo's live sports blog. We've got updates from Sunderland's game against Chelsea, Middlesbrough's trip to Peterborough United, Hartlepool hosting Stevenage and Darlington's visit to Newton Aycliffe. Join in by commenting on the foot of this article or by including the hashtag #echosport on Twitter.

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