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Pre-Season Friendly: Sunderland 3 Tottenham 1

24 July 2013 15:24

Tottenham were without Gareth Bale as they surrendered an early lead to lose 3-1 to Sunderland in treacherous conditions in the Asia Cup.

The Welsh winger, a reported transfer target of Real Madrid, missed out on Wednesday's fixture with an injured gluteal as Andre Villas-Boas saw his side pegged back after Gylfi Sigurdsson's deflected opener.

New arrivals played a significant role in Sunderland's revival, with Cabral levelling the scores before the interval and Moberg Karlsson grabbing the third after Wes Brown's header had given them the lead.

And there was worrying news for Villas-Boas after the interval as Jan Vertonghen was carried off on a stretcher following an awkward landing.

Torrential rain caused the match at the Hong Kong Stadium to be delayed by half an hour and reduced to 40 minutes each half.

Paolo Di Canio named newcomers Vito Mannone, Jozy Altidore, Emanuele Giaccherini and Cabral in his starting line-up but saw his charges begin the game on the back foot.

Tottenham's early pressure told after 28 minutes when Kyle Walker pulled the ball back for Iceland international Sigurdsson and his deflected effort from the middle of the penalty area deceived Mannone to hand the London club the advantage.

It took just six minutes for Di Canio's men to equalise, Tom Huddlestone's hesitancy affording Altidore the opportunity to tee up former Basel midfielder Cabral, who side-footed beyond Heurelho Gomes.

Vertonghen was introduced at the interval but lasted just six minutes as the Belgian defender's ankle buckled underneath him after he had contested a header with Stephane Sessegnon.

The sodden condition of the pitch is unlikely to have helped and Villas-Boas' mood will have worsened when defender Brown headed home from Swedish substitute Karlsson's 64th-minute corner.

Brad Friedel, on in place of Gomes, produced a stunning one-handed save to keep out Connor Wickham's close-range header, but Karlsson added the third in the 79th minute with a calm finish after springing the offside trap.

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