60' John O'Shea, the former Red, makes a risky headed pass back to Westwood but the keeper clutches bravely as van Persie challenges in the air.
58' Van Persie gets in a shot that is well held by Westwood as United start to show their mettle. Most of the singing is now coming from the Reds contingent as they try and urge the team on.
56' Sebastian Larsson is on for goalscorer Gardner. All to play for now as the away fans roar their approval.
55' GOAL! Adnan Januzaj draws United level with his first Premier League goal on his maiden start. The Belgian finishes in style after initially picking out Evra on the left and meeting his accurate cross emphatically.
52' United are trying to make an impact here as the gloom descends on Wearside. The home side still look more than capable on the break but Gardner has been booked.
49' Januzaj is booked for simulation after driving into the box. Referee Chris Foy looked right in not pointing to the spot.
46' The teams are back out for the second half and United have an uphill battle against a side scrapping for their lives. David Moyes hasn't made any substitutions at the interval.
Half time: Sunderland lead courtesy of Craig Gardner's fifth-minute strike and, to be frank, it could have been worse for the Reds. Only a world-class save by David De Gea has kept the champions within touching distance and a far better second 45 minutes is required.
44' Giaccherini spurns a great chance to double the lead after Johnson escapes down the left and cleverly evades a couple of challenges. United are living dangerously at the back.