St. James Park was stunned when Sunderland winger Adam Johnson defeated home side Newcastle United with his 90th minute finish off the counter-attack.
The two sides had played to a 0-0 scoreline for a huge majority of the match, and Magpies striker Ayoze Perez had two great chances as his side outshot their opponents and appeared to enjoy the more dynamic attack at certain points in the match.
The result-deciding finish marks Johnson’s third consecutive Tyne-Wear derby in which he has scored, and the 27-year-old believes that the United faithful must really come to hate him due to his effectiveness against the Alan Pardew-led squad.
[RELATED: Pardew puts blame on himself for derby loss]
“Three years in a row, they must hate me here!” Johnson said, via Sky Sports. “I’m delighted. That’s three wins here with three clean sheets – you can’t ask for much more.
“It’s a personal favourite of mine – great ground, great atmosphere. We all seemed to rise to the occasion.”
There was also a possibility that Johnson, who made 73 appearances and scored 11 goals for Manchester City prior to heading north in 2012, was going to be substituted off the field in the match’s dying moments. But Sunderland manager Gus Poyet luckily elected to keep him on the pitch for the full 90 minutes.
“The manager said when I was over his side ‘five minutes’, but I said ‘no, I’m alright’. Maybe that worked in my favor,” Johnson stated.
A 0-0 draw would’ve seen Newcastle move within one point of Swansea City at eight place in the Premier League table, while Sunderland would have failed to capture their third league win of the season.
Now, gaining three points, the Black Cats have jumped QPR and West Brom to position themselves in the 14th spot, and the Toons stay slotted at ninth.