O'Nien's problem but what about Cattermole? Five things we learnt v Sheffield Wednesday

While supporting Sunderland, it is a rarity that we will lose a match and have little to complain about. The 0-2 scoreline suffered last night at the hands of Sheffield Wednesday doesn't do us justice and there are plenty of positives to take away. Here are five things we learnt from last night's loss.

by Molly_Burke Friday, 17 August 2018 01:06 PM Comments

1. Luke O'Nien is enthusiastic, but it may get the better of him

Luke O'Nien didn't have the best of debuts against Charlton, but you have to cut him some slack since he had literally only arrived at the club. After being dropped for the Luton game, Jack Ross decided to give him another opportunity last night.

I did think he was a lot more impressive than his previous performance and blimey he's got a lot of energy. Whilst he wasn't the best when in possession, O'Nien seemed to be everywhere, constantly pressing and pushing forward. 

However, my main criticism is, despite him having the enthusiasm that we have longed for for ages, it may get the better of him. On several occassions he was so eager to win the ball back that he was lunging in for stupid tackles. I know we all love a Cattermole-esque tackle and it was something to cheer on at the time, but it was a surprise it took 59 minutes for O'Nien to actually get a yellow card, and we can't have him recieving bookings left right and centre. 

Despite this, I do think that O'Nien is probably just so keen to impress and it will just take him a while to settle in, but once that happens we will start to love him like Wycombe fans do. He has only been with the club a few weeks but I have already gained a soft spot for him and I was dying for him to score last night. 

2. Lee Cattermole was actually pretty good 

It is looking unlikely that Cattermole will leave Sunderland this month and seeing the midfielder pull off a performance like that has made that a little less disappointing. You have to have been living under a rock not to know that Cattermole has been pretty terrible for a very long time now, however I am not one to pile on all the abuse that he seems to be getting elsewhere.

Cattermole has spent a majority of his professional career on Wearside and there is no doubt he loves the club. When he made it known he wanted to leave, he never conducted himself badly and continued to train and play for the team. He could have done what Jack Rodwell, Papy Djilobodji or Didier Ndong did, but he didn't. And now he is set to stay, he appears to be trying his best to get back into that starting line-up and I'm not going to complain about that. 

If the 30-year-old is prepared to put everything in to help us gain promotion and is consistently playing like he did last night, I am happy. 

3. Charlie Wyke will thrive 

Last night we played very well and what was most impressive was our build-up play. Despite not even playing our strongest team, the likes of Embleton, Power, Honeyman and even James and Hume, were playing some lovely football. Our only issue was our lack of a threat up top, with Maguire clearly not being an out-and-out striker. It was clear that we needed Charlie Wyke hovering around the box, and if he is provided with that kind of delivery when he returns, he is bound to score goals. 

We are only two games into our League One campaign but Honeyman, Gooch, Maguire and Maja have already looked fantastic and have linked up very well, but just think what we could do when the likes of McGeough, McGeady and Wyke return from injury. It's all just too exciting. 

4. Alim Ozturk needs to stay far, far away 

Alim Ozturk looked very poor in most of pre-season, perhaps improving slightly after his first shocker against Darlington, and failed to impress once again when he was handed his competitive debut on the first day of the season against Charlton. But, to be fair, Glen Loovens also struggled, but he went onto prove himself. Ozturk, on the other hand, did not.

The former Hearts man was dropped for Jack Baldwin against Luton, and an impressive performance from Loovens and the ex-Peterborough captain made it likely that Ozturk would have to work very hard to get back into the starting XI. And so he was given his chance last night against Sheffield Wednesday. 

Somehow, Ozturk actually managed to look even worse than he did right at the start of pre-season. Sunderland were absolutely dominating The Owls and it didn't look like Wednesday were going to get a look in, until Ozturk got involved. Their first goal was completely and utterly his fault and for the remaining hour he continued to look nervy, making mistake after mistake. 

The centre-back doesn't look at all capable of playing at this level and it is already looking like we need someone to replace him, because I really don't think he should be anywhere near our team. 

5. We finally have a decent keeper (fingers crossed!)

Granted, Jon McLaughlin hasn't had to pull off multiple drastic saves quite yet, but he has seemed very, very comfortable in net. Sheffield Wednesday's attack didn't threaten him too much, but when they did he was able to prevent any great chances for them - much more than Lee Camp could ever do. After a year of three dreadful keepers to go with all their shocking goalkeeping errors, it is so refreshing to have a keeper that is capable of doing his job and we don't have to panic everytime the ball goes near him. Of course, now that I've said that he is sure to give a penalty away or score an own goal against Scunthorpe at the weekend. 


Sunderland, wyke, cattermole, o'nien, sheffieldwednesday, carabaocup, ozturk, mclaughlin