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Turner & Quinn linked to CEO post
A hot news topic right now is the vacant chief executive post following the resignation of Margaret Byrne. It was widely reported over the weekend that former chairman Niall Quinn was shortlisted for the role, although the general consensus is that a return for Sir Niall looks doubtful with the Irishman enjoying a far-less stressful post with Sky Sports.
Former Sunderland keeper Chris Turner, who made more then 200 senior appearances in the 70s and 80s, is reportedly very interested in the vacant post for which Ellis Short is said to keen on recruiting a CEO with some kind of footballing background as part of steps to reconnect the club with fans. Turner is currently CEO of Chesterfield and has been in his post for the last five years during one of the club's more successful periods. As a former manager and Director of Football, Turner certainly boasts the kind of football background which our hierarchy has been devoid of since Quinn's departure.
As long as it is not a Lawyer, we should be okay.
Much like he did at Brighton, Liam Bridcutt is enjoying life in the Championship and has received rave reviews from most connected with Leeds United where he is currently on loan. Manager Steve Evans described the now Scotland International as "sensational" on the back of his most recent performance during the club's 2-1 win away to Blackburn. Bridcutt is top of the agenda for the summer transfer window and it is highly unlikely Sam Allardyce and Sunderland will be standing in his way, given that he just is not very good.
Atkinson to ref the derby
Martin Atkinson is the man in charge of the Wear Tyne derby on Sunday. That's right, the same man to allow West Brom's winner to stand at the Hawthorns and generally give us a torrid time whenever he is in charge at the Stadium of Light. The last time he reffed a Sunderland away match was, however, our 1-0 win against Crystal Palace, let's concentrate on that and make ourselves feel better.
Jan Kirchhoff has spoken pre-derby and echoed his manager's sentiments regarding clean sheets. He told the Echo;
"We need to get clean sheets. Everyone can see that we ceate chances. I’ve seen that in every game since I’ve been here, but we don’t manage to stay strong enough in defence and get a clean sheet."
Kirchhoff has been one of our top performers recently and it was his exit from the Southampton game, being replaced by John O'Shea, which ended up the catalyst for Southampton's equaliser. There is no better time to buck the trend and notch our first clean sheet since Stoke City all the way back in November(!).