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Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences

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Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences Empty Wise Men Say

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-10-20, 11:50 am

WHY Sunderland? Why always us? Why do we have to be the club humiliated time and again, publically and shamefully?

Just to make things that bit more special, the latest in a growing list of gloriously ignominious defeats came against a side who have no right to be scoring eight times in a competitive Premier League match.
I know it happens to other clubs and even nations too – Brazil managed to concede seven on home soil in a World Cup – but we seem to collapse and crumble more than anyone else.
Not so long ago, a less than average Aston Villa put six past us. Going further back, the likes of Everton and Chelsea have put seven past us, but none of those performances felt quite so hapless as this latest surrender at St Mary’s.
Maybe they were though.
Southampton are a good side, better than the aforementioned Villa team, though not of the same standard as the Chelsea or Everton sides who put us to the sword.
Time is a healer, though. Since losing those games, we’ve won big games, not quite by the same sort of margins, but against teams we should probably not be beating.
We’ve also stayed up against the odds and reached a League Cup final.
At the moment, it feels like this heaviest of heavy defeats, this shame of shames defines us as a club, as supporters, but perhaps these lows – and this was the lowest of them, barring a certain 5-1 derby hammering – allow us to enjoy the highs, infrequent as they may be, that little bit more keenly.
I might not feel quite so philosophical about it if I’d made the exhausting and expensive round trip to Southampton, but now that a bit of time has elapsed, I can’t help but think “what’s the point in being angry?”
It’s not going to make the result go away or erase that gutless performance.
It was a freak result sparked off by a freak own goal, the like of which I’ve never seen before, which came at a time when Sunderland were actually on top.
Believe it or not, we did look the better side for the opening 10 minutes and weren’t even out of the game until the third squirmed through Vito Mannone in typically abysmal fashion.
Unbelievably – or very much believably, given we are Sunderland – this result came on the back of us starting the day with the joint best defensive record in the Premier League.
In fact, it was mentioned in the Manchester City-Tottenham match commentary on BT Sport. I even tweeted about it. Maybe this is entirely my fault. I invited this result. I jinxed it. Sorry everyone.
Joking aside, obviously pretty much nobody comes out of this with any credit. The usually pretty reliable Vito Mannone had a shocker, John O’Shea looked anything but a man who’d just scored against the world champions on his 100th appearance for Ireland, Jordi Gomez was non-existent, Will Buckley anonymous, Connor Wickham shocking, Vergini comically bad and, well, the list goes on. By omitting their names, I do not absolve them of blame.
Oh, and Gus Poyet, a man who I’ve praised several times this season will also have to take a long hard look in the mirror too; he certainly played his part in this latest Sunderland-shaped mess.
As supporters however, we can take solace in the fact it wasn’t us out there on the pitch. We’ve been embarrassed by association, but ultimately it’s the players who look like fools.
As Sunderland fans, perhaps we should do what we do best and just laugh at ourselves, our club, our desperately poor players.
God knows, we’re used to a humiliation now, so we might as well redefine it as humour.
As the old adage goes, “If you don’t laugh, you’ll cry” and frankly this hopeless bunch don’t deserve our tears.
CRAIG CLARK

H The Wise Men Say podcaayst is available from every Monday, with SAFC debate from a variety of guests and post-match reaction from Gus Poyet. You can be stream it direct from wisemensay.co.uk or subscribe to it on iTunes.

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Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences Empty Re: Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-10-20, 11:54 am

IT was third time unlucky for one Black Cats fan who now boasts the unenviable record of seeing all the team’s 8-0 defeats.

Cass Farrar, from Whitburn, was at Southampton on Saturday as Sunderland suffered the crushing loss.
Seeing a side get such a trashing once might be enough to leave any fan downhearted, but for the 69-year-old retired headteacher, the trip to St Mary’s Stadium made it the third time he has seen the devastating result.
Cass, a member of London’s branch of the Sunderland Supporters’ Association, had been living in the capital for two years when he saw the away game at West Ham’s Upton Park, on October 19, 1968.
England hero Geoff Hurst racked up six goals against Sunderland and fellow World Cup winner Bobby Moore, and Trevor Brooking took it up to eight.
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He was at Watford on September 25, 1982, to see Luther Bissett put four past the Wearsiders’ goal, with Ross Jenkins and Nigel Callaghan scoring two each.
Cass, who now lives in Greenwich, said: “I saw the chairman of the London branch at the match on Saturday.
“He said the same as me, that’s been three we’ve seen.
“Vergini, well I sort of blinked and he put it in the Sunderland goal after 10 minutes. I thought ‘What was that all about?’
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“Mannone didn’t have the best of games so he’s probably to blame for two or three goals and then Bridcutt ran in.
“Southampton were so slick and I think we made them look good.
“It was abysmal. I like Lee Cattermole and it looked like he’d given up and some of the others as well, but it was a shock, the floodgates were opened so easily.
“But some of these dafties, some of them send in letters to the Echo, you get people who say ‘I’m never going again’ and I just think, what are you talking about? I’ve already got my ticket for Crystal Palace. I’ll be going.”
Cass’s strongest memories of the West Ham game include the goalscoring headers by Hurst, and at Watford, a screen which beamed out an image of three yellow footballers dancing to celebrate a home score.
“It was set off eight times that day, so it was like it was up there all the time,” added Cass.
Cass, is married to school teacher Bethan, 67, and dad to Lucy, 33, Sarah, 31, and James, 27.
Despite being encouraged to support Charlton, James, an actor who played Liam Gilmore in Hollyoaks, has followed in his father’s footsteps to become a Sunderland fan.
Cass is helped in his bid to get tickets by Peter Robinson, who was in the year above him at Ryhope Grammar School, taking in about 20 games a season.
He attended Saturday’s match with Barry Emmerson, from Whitburn, and a classmate, and Barry’s son Martin, a cricket commentator for BBC Newcastle.

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Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences Empty Re: Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-10-20, 11:58 am


  • by Chris Young
  • [email=chris.young@jpress.co.ukTwitter @YoungSunEcho][You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] Twitter @YoungSunEcho[/email]


COST of admission through the St Mary’s turnstiles – £24.

Cost of coach travel for the 660-mile round trip to the south coast – £40.
Cost of pints, pies and pop – well, alcohol consumption increased significantly when fans entered the drowning sorrows stage on the journey home.
It could be an expensive exercise for Sunderland’s players if Vito Mannone’s plan to offer some kind of financial refund gets off the ground.
At the very least, the price of the tickets – which had admittedly already been discounted as an agreement between the two clubs – should be compensated.
But no price can be put on the pride which has been dented after such a horrifying mauling, or the subsequent humiliation from the television post-mortems.
On the terraces, in the dug-out, in the boardroom, on the pitch and back home on Wearside, this has been a thoroughly embarrassing weekend to be associated with Sunderland.
Everyone accepts losing, particularly against a decent side like Southampton.
Everyone accepts defensive blunders.
Even an own goal which prompted open laughter among the Southampton supporters can be brushed off with a splash of gallows humour.
But capitulation? Surrender? That’s another thing altogether.
The good-will stemming from a solid start to the season has evaporated in tandem with the confidence of Gus Poyet’s side.
Sunderland’s players have some making up to do which may require several months to complete.
They need to begin by making a hefty first instalment on that pay-back in this weekend’s Stadium of Light clash against Arsenal.
Poyet – far from blameless himself for Saturday’s shambles on the south coast – faces an uphill battle to restore some self-belief and positivity on the training ground this week in preparation for the visit of a Gunners side who head to Anderlecht in the Champions League on Wednesday.
The Uruguayan needs to stress that despite the humiliating margin of defeat, Sunderland have only lost one game; a game where they would have been chuffed to come away with anything anyway.
With injuries mounting for a threadbare squad, Poyet has minimal opportunity to wield the axe.
Aside from possible recalls for Jack Rodwell and Adam Johnson – and potentially a debut for Anthony Reveillere if he pens a short-term deal this week – there is little Poyet can realistically do to shuffle his pack.
The sight of Danny Graham and Cabral on the bench at St Mary’s said it all.
Here were two players among the substitutes who Sunderland had ceaselessly hawked around throughout the summer.
Cabral wasn’t even given a squad number back in August.
With minimal options for change, Poyet needs to rely on those who let the club down so badly at St Mary’s to dust themselves down, show some character and respond with aplomb this Saturday.
There was at least an indication after the full-time whistle that Poyet’s men won’t hide from the responsibilities of their actions.
The red faces in blue went towards those remaining in the away end to applaud them, before several were willing to perform post-match interview duties, rather than hiding in silence.
Santiago Vergini even asked to speak with the club website to apologise for his slapstick own goal.
But, together with restoring some dignity, Sunderland also need to rediscover some defensive solidity.
Southampton were given a two-goal head-start by a couple of comical mistakes, when Sunderland had actually been the better side for the opening 10 minutes, albeit without hurting the hosts.
But what followed was a staggering cluster of defensive ineptitude. It didn’t bear any resemblance to the side which looked so resilient in the previous seven games.
Perhaps some in Sunderland’s ranks lost their heads after referee Andre Marriner failed to hand the visitors a way back into the game when home goalkeeper Fraser Forster couldn’t have taken out Steven Fletcher any more clearly inside the box.
Certainly, Lee Cattermole and Seb Larsson were still remonstrating with Marriner when the teams re-emerged for the start of the second half.
At 2-1, against 10 men, it would have been very much game on. Instead, within two minutes, Sunderland were 3-0 down.
But refereeing clangers – particularly with Mr Marriner against Sunderland – happen. No player should be spending the remainder of the game preoccupied over one incident.
It was no excuse for the depths Sunderland trawled after the penalty shout either.
The basics were a foreign concept to Sunderland.
No midfield runners were tracked.
Neither Connor Wickham nor Will Buckley offered a helping hand defensively in halting the marauding runs of Southampton full-backs Nathaniel Clyne and Ryan Bertrand.
Southampton were able to to slice through Sunderland’s defence almost at walking pace.
Clyne, Bertrand, Dusan Tadic and Graziano Pelle scented blood against an enemy who had thrown in the towel and they got it.
There was no resistance whatsoever from the visitors. Even the grit of Cattermole was replaced by a bubbling, directionless frustration.
All that came from Sunderland was more mistakes – another own goal, a dreadful clearance from Mannone and more feeble attempts at marking.
Only once in a generation will supporters see footballing suicide that is so bad.
If Southampton had set their heart on reaching a dozen in that final half-hour, they probably could have done it.
Poyet didn’t help though with his substitutions.
Replacing Wes Brown with Liam Bridcutt and asking the midfielder to go to right-back was baffling and backfired spectacularly.
Bridcutt was simply ripped to shreds.
Removing Larsson from the field took away one of the few Sunderland players who was still willing to press and close down the Saints.
And then using Johnson in a central role, while the utterly ineffective Wickham stayed out wide, had no effect whatsoever in stemming the tide.
It simply gave Clyne and Tadic the chance to continue tormenting the out-of-breath Wickham.
Poyet must question his own contribution, as much as those who let him down so badly.
As his players left the field, Poyet barely made eye contract with them. He simply stood on the touchline with his arms folded, digesting the full horror of what he had just witnessed.
The Academy of Light today will doubtless be a quiet, eerie place.
Perhaps a no-holds-barred home truths session is needed. Perhaps the defeat has to be swept aside as one of those freak afternoons, just so that smiles can be restored to faces.
Those 2,600 who spent good money travelling to the south coast won’t forget though.
Payback time needs to begin this Saturday.

SOUTHAMPTON: Forster, Clyne, Fonte, Alderweireld, Bertrand, S Davis (Mane 65), Cork, Schneiderlin, Long (Wanyama 65), Pelle (Mayuka 80), Tadic. Subs not used: K Davis, Yoshida, Gardos, Reed. Booked: Schneiderlin (50)
SUNDERLAND: Mannone, Vergini, Brown (Bridcutt 46), O’Shea, van Aanholt, Cattermole, Larsson (Rodwell 60), Gomez (Johnson 60), Buckley, Wickham, Fletcher. Subs not used: Pantilimon, Mavrias, Graham, Cabral. Booked: Wickham (9), Cattermole (25), Bridcutt (82)
Attendance: 29,615. Referee: Andre Marriner

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Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences Empty Re: Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences

Post  Hieronymus on 2014-10-20, 2:55 pm

Can feel the pain  affraid

But I take issue with one of the statements in the arricle:  "Neither Connor Wickham nor Will Buckley offered a helping hand defensively in halting the marauding runs of Southampton full-backs Nathaniel Clyne and Ryan Bertrand."


I watched the whole match Saturday night on Sky (I know sucker for punishment or what!) and I agree Buckley was very poor (and should have been the one taken off instead of Larsson), however I also saw Wickham many times in our own box defending and making clearances. He does not have the pace to stop Clyne and he took one booking trying. What else was he supposed to do? Get another booking and get sent off as well to cap it all off? I know it is easy to criticise after a mauling like that but Gus was at fault for playing him on the left and not changing the system when we were 2 goals down and the penalty was not given to us.  Mad


BTW I also was sure towards the end of the game Wickham was limping. We will see if any news of a possible injury materialises this week.  
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Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences Empty Re: Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences

Post  Guest on 2014-10-21, 9:25 am

Like Aitch, I watched the full 90 mins on Sky, plus the analysis, etc.

Not wishing to be accused of saying " We lost badly, but we can take positives." Because I can't see any.

I know it's a funny old game, and this is not the 1st time following Safc is exasperating. Somehow we are always looking over our shoulder, expecting the worst, and so on. I still think we could make the top half, given some luck. But I cant really rationalise that if cornered. I was hoping that the new signings might help, but how do you rationalise a team performance with a very, very good defensive record this season playing so, so badly the next week ? Or a decent GK who uncharacteristically has a mare.

So I prefer to think of this as a one off, a performance like Arsenal last season who were thrashed several times, but who finished so well overall. Or like poor QPR who thrashed L'pool but gave away 2 OG's to lose 3-2.

But on the other hand ...............

I just hope they can learn a lesson.

As a footnote. I see Buckley was mentioned above. He ran the furthest in that game at 7.7 MILES, with Catter next on 6.9 and Vergini 6.7. So the boys done good - they put a shift in - they were committed. Rubbish. They were crap. Plain and simple. 

And to rub it in, Goughy (joking I hope) said on Talksport, "What are those fans moaning about ? They had a good day out. They saw 8 goals."

(Soton figures to compare - Cork 7.8 miles, then Tadic 7.6 and Schneiderlin 7.5  : But that was all in our half of the pitch)
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Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences Empty Re: Chris Young’s SAFC analysis: Time for home truths and consequences

Post  Guest on 2014-10-21, 11:15 am

he left before the 7th and 8th goals went in at west ham he said
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Post  Guest on 2014-10-24, 12:08 pm

Just belatedly read all of this thread, I must say its given me food for thought, but since Ive read the posts, I don't feel hungry anymore. More like being sick.
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