Sunderland 0-2 Swansea City: Abject end to Premier League football at the Stadium of Light

Llorente scored Swansea's first goal early on
Llorente scored Swansea's first goal early on
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The final Premier League game at the Stadium of Light, and unless something radical happens, it will be the last for some time.

This was an abject, pitiful way to go.

Sunderland may have had the most of the ball and the territory in the second period, but the damage had already been done in a wretched first half when Swansea were able to coast a 2-0 lead.

The talk had been of building momentum, giving fans optimism for next season.

This will harden the views of many that change must sweep the club before any hope of a brighter future can be seriously entertained.

The Black Cats were poor at the back, largely absent in midfield and toothless up front.

Swansea's midfield will rarely have had more comfortable afternoons, the 34-year-old Leon Britton strolling through the game, making passes, tackles, even winning headers at just 5ft 5inches.

An improved second half could not undo Fernando Llorente and Kyle Naughton's first half goals.

The empty seats all over the ground said it all. There was nothing to enjoy here.

The opener came just minutes into the game, a soft goal and an uncharacteristic error from the usually exemplary Jordan Pickford.

Gylfi Sigurdsson's free-kick was absolutely sublime, whipped in from deep on the right flank. The young keeper came to try and punch but the pace of the ball was always going to beat him and Fernando Llorente, so impressive in the air this season, only had to stoop and make a slight connection to turn home.

The goal sparked some chants of 'Are you watching Ellis Short' and 'We want Moyesy out', and the anger only deepened as an abject first half played out.

Sunderland created little, Didier Ndong and Fabio Borini firing wide, the former perhaps should have hit the target when the ball broke to him in the box.

Despite those isolated efforts, Swansea were coasting, Leon Britton and Gylfi Sigurdsson unopposed as they controlled the tempo of the game.

The Black Cats were devoid of any inspiration or momentum, further hampered by injuries to Jason Denayer and Victor Anichebe.

Their best chance came on the half hour mark as a corner fell to Jermain Defoe at the back post, Lukasz Fabianski making a forceful block. Swansea had not forced many saves from Pickford, but their control of the game was clear.

There was an inevitability about their second on the brink of half-time, a period when Sunderland have been so vulnerable all season on home turf. Leon Britton coasted across the field, escaping Ndong too easily, before passing to Ki. He teed up Kyle Naughton, who glided into the box and scored with a ferocious drive into the top corner.

That goal was met with predictable fury, many storming for the exits. Plenty did not return for the second half. Those who did met David Moyes' emergence with fierce boos. The players received similar treatment.

The second half unsurprisingly started at a low pace, Swansea happy to sit on their lead and allow Sunderland to try and force the issue.

They were largely unable to do so, ponderous as fan anger broke out in the stands. The chants from the South Stand were relentless. The Black Cats should have had a penalty just before the hour, when Seb Larsson's free-kick struck Sigurdsson's arm in the wall.

The Swede then found Wahbi Khazri on the edge of the box with a corner, the Tunisian connecting with a volley but firing wide.

They ought to have pulled a goal back when Khazri's free-kick bounced awkwardly in front of Fabianski, who could only palm it back into the danger areas. Billy Jones had the goal at his mercy but could only fire into the side netting.

Sunderland were at this point at least exerting some pressure on a Swansea side who were pushed deeper into their own half.

Khazri came close again with a firm drive from a narrow angle, Jermain Defoe's follow-up deflected wide.

The game fizzled out from there, much like Sunderland's season.

The sea of red seats was a sad reflection of how drained the fanbase has become after a season that has plumbed woeful depths.

It will be an uphill battle to convince many to return for future battles.