The game started at a frantic pace, with both sides looking to get on top in the early stages.
© Getty Images
The Magpies had their first real effort on goal after 12 minutes, but Yohan Cabaye could only fire over from 25 yards out.
The game sprung into action once again on 17 minutes when Kieren Westwood pulled off a fine save to keep out Cabaye's 30-yard free kick. Then, at the other end, Tim Krul did well to keep out Fletcher's fierce drive.
The away side started to control the possession on the half hour mark, but created very little as Sunderland's defence stood firm.
Hatem Ben Arfa had an ambitious effort on goal after 38 minutes, striking the ball wide of the post from 35 yards out.