Opinion

Mannone Versus Westwood

by MartinW Monday, 23 September 2013 09:31 PM

I really like lower league football. Not that I would want to see us play it again, of course – despite the memories of one strangely enjoyable 1987-88 season in Division 3. I go and watch it in the flesh when I can though I travel a lot with work. Taking in real football at somewhere like Macclesfield...


Jack Comeback

by GMac88 Monday, 23 September 2013 09:28 PM

With Jack Colback rejecting a new contract and seemingly seeking an exit, just how important is he in Paolo Di Canio’s squad?Colback is currently the longest serving player at Sunderland, and when you factor in his youth career – that’s thirteen years he has been here. Canny stint. His development over that time has always been admirable if not spectacular. Until the 2011-12 season his contribution to the first team was sporadical but since then he has commanded a regular place in the side achieving nearly 60 starts over the last two campaigns. That would be appearances pretty much everywhere on the pitch, having nearly as many elsewhere as in his favoured central midfield position.


And I-E-I

by GMac88 Monday, 23 September 2013 09:27 PM

Just six months after arriving on Wearside, Alfie N’Diaye is seemingly set to move back to Turkey as Süper Lig’s Eskişehirspor close in on the central midfielder. Paolo Di Canio was spoilt for choice last season in centre midfield, albeit a choice between particularly average performing players.


Brown Back In Town

by MartinW Monday, 23 September 2013 09:26 PM

Although pretty much all incoming transfers are interesting – which has made this a particularly interesting close season, of course – I must say that I haven’t got a clue whether Valentin Roberge or Modibo Diakite are any good at all. I would hope that they are better than the men they replaced (Matt Kilgallon and Titus Bramble), without the baggage, and probably cheaper too...


Do Sunderland Need Another Striker?

by MFBriggs Monday, 23 September 2013 09:25 PM

This summer has been a rollercoaster of a ride in terms of transfers for Sunderland.With nine players already signed and potentially one or two due in, the entire squad has had a massive facelift with the majority of the changes being made in the centre and defensive side of squad.Three forwards have been signed so far under Paolo Di Canio; Jozy Altidore, David Moberg Karlsson and Duncan Watmore...


Has Paolo Forgotten How to Count?

by John_C Monday, 23 September 2013 09:23 PM

Has Paolo forgotten how to count? At first sight of the new squad numbers, one may be forgiven if thinking that Paolo Di Canio has caught a touch of the Harry Redknapp's syndrome in having difficulty in counting. Notably missing are 1 to 4. Also eye-catching, Lee Cattermole, captain for the past three years, has been put out on a limb by being given the highest, 33, while none at all has been assigned for out-of-favour defender Phil Bardsley. Not fully sure if an abacus is required but there may be reasons behind the apparent shortage of mathematical skills.


Catt Conundrum

by GMac88 Monday, 23 September 2013 09:23 PM

“We will see. It depends”Paolo Di Canio ’s response when asked if Lee Cattermole has a future at Sunderland. It could hardly fill Cattermole with confidence that he is required at the club. Even more telling was this quote made before Alfred N’Diaye moved back to Turkey; “In my opinion we need a specific player with specific characteristics in...


The Wickham Man

by RichardBurn Monday, 23 September 2013 09:20 PM

Connor Wickham is not a teenager anymore, not by a long shot. The time for 'give the boy a chance, he's only young' is over. The excessive referencing to his stellar England under-21s scoring record must now be cast aside. It’s time to expect more. In this crucial, exciting yet unpredictable season for Sunderland AFC...


Set Piece Suckers

by GMac88 Monday, 23 September 2013 09:18 PM

Sunderland set piece woes have been the prime catalyst for our poor start to the new campaign. Had we defended these with any real organisation or composure, we would theoretically have at least four points on the board. So where exactly has this huge defensive shortfall stemmed from? Well, one person we certainly can’t blame is Martin O’Neill.


Praise For Paolo Pantomime Performance

by John_C Monday, 23 September 2013 09:16 PM

Paolo Di Canio may be facing criticism from many quarters for Sunderland's inept performances so far this season, but he did not show he was under pressure at all when he turned out as a late call-up for Steve Harper's testimonial on Wednesday night. The Italian would have surely known he was putting himself in the firing line to receive the wrath of most of the 50,793 fans who packed St James' Park.