Darren Bent's eighth goal of the season handed Sunderland a famous 1-0 victory over Liverpool in controversial circumstances.
The £10million striker's fifth-minute shot was deflected past keeper Pepe Reina by a beach ball which had been thrown on to the pitch, although the Reds' protests were in vain.
Bent might have collected at least a hat-trick on a day when Rafael Benitez's injury-hit side were nowhere near their best, although keeper Craig Gordon had to make a fine double save in injury time to deny Dirk Kuyt and then substitute David Ngog.
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