We visit Aston Villa on Saturday in yet another huge game. Well, let’s be honest, every game is massive when you’re bottom of the table. For some insight from the other side, Damian from Villa’s best blog site The Villa Blog (@thevillablog) kindly spent the time answer some questions on Sunderland, Paul Lambert and the match.
So the Britannia is next, a Stadium which hasn’t imposed it’s famed toughness on us in recent years. It is a huge game to help us keep up the momentum built in our two momentus recent home wins. It is also a big game for Stoke City and we were lucky to get a few moments of ESPN blogger James Whittaker’s time (@northstokie) to talk about Sunderland, Stoke, Mark Hughes, the relegation battle and of course the weekend’s match.
I think the international weekend was perfect timing, contrary to the belief it could have dampened the high of winning two massive home games. I’m sure the players selected went about their national team duties with much bigger smiles on their faces than the break in September whilst those left back at home continued to swat up on an information-heavy footballing philosophy. Preparation is key and we visit Stoke City who are a completely different prospect to the Stoke who have only scored once against us in the last four meetings.
Well, I'm not sure if I was expecting that. Tribal loyalties mean I'm not on as much of a high as I was after the Newcastle win, but the organisation of our defence and the heart our players proved the seeming ease we are showing to a commitment to possession football from the back make this the most heartening performance from the club in months.
Well, that was certainly fun but now we have got to face up to the stark reality once more that we are still stuck in the rut of a relegation battle. It would be pretty ludicrous of me to suggest this weekend’s game against Hull City is as important our win against the Mags – but it can’t be too far behind in the context of our season.
Whilst we are still revelling on our tremendous derby win – there is another football match to think about as Sunderland take on former gaffer Steve Bruce’s Hull City. Andy from the Tigers’ former fanzine and most established website Amber Nectar (@Amber__Nectar) kindly took the time answer a few questions on Sunderland, Bruce, their season and a match of huge importance for both clubs.
Gus Poyet is to take first bow as Sunderland boss at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday. We have enjoyed reasonable success against the Swans since their arrival in the Premier League, unbeaten in four games. We caught up with Jules from Swansea City’s best fansite SwansFC (@swansfc) to ask him about our current plight, Poyet, the Europa League and of course this weekend’s match.
We were lucky enough to get a few moments with Republik of Mancunia writer Nashat Hassan (@nashat_hassan) – so we fired him a few questions. He talks Sunderland, Paolo Di Canio, United, Moyes and today’s game.
Perhaps it’s time to alleviate ourselves from the thought-shackling managerial mess and think a little bit about football, for a bit anyway. Kevin Ball takes charge of what is likely to be his last match as caretaker manager with the next permanent boss set to be announced next week, apparently. So what exactly does a managerless team with one point on the board, the worst defensive record who find themselves rooted to the bottom of the table need next? A visit from the champions of course!
It's hard to be confident going into this weekend's game against Liverpool, but the regime change and a more relaxed atmosphere around the Academy is surely a huge boost.Life under Paolo Di Canio doesn't seem to have suited our squad and if some of the stories I have heard about him are true I'm not surprised. Hopefully they enjoy life a bit more under Kevin Ball and we can start picking up points sooner rather than later. We are still bottom of the league, let’s not forget that!