The Observer should be paying Pete Sixsmith a salary. As well as writing the half-term report, he summed up yesterday’s match for them. Here, plus the same exercise involving an Everton fan, is his fan’s view of the match …
THE FANS’ PLAYER RATINGS AND VERDICT
Pete Sixsmith, salutsunderland.com
Once again we failed to close down a game after going one up. Darren Bent scored a great goal that showed what we are capable of when we go forward. But we cannot control the midfield. Fellaini ran the show and, to be honest, we didn’t have anyone to compare to him. If you are defending in the penalty box then you are always going to concede. John Mensah was excellent, while Steed Malbranque looked like he is on his way out of the club.
The fan’s player ratings Fulop 6; Bardsley 7, Mensah 8 (Nosworthy 71 6), Da Silva 7, McCartney 6; Malbranque 4 (Zenden 58 6) Cana 6, Henderson 5, Reid 6; Jones 6, Bent 7
Steve Jones, BlueKipper.com
We got a good point in the end. But I’m disappointed we didn’t get the three points. They had a good period in the first half, but the second half was all us. That’s our problem this season, we can’t win these sort of games like we did last season. Fellaini was outstanding. This was his best game for us and I think that is because he’s playing in the middle of the park. Pienaar was good, as was Saha, even though he missed a few chances. But we can’t keep using injuries as an excuse.
The fan’s player ratings Howard 7; Hibbert 6, Neill 7, Heitinga 6, Baines 8; Bilyaletdinov 6, Osman 7 (Yakubu 69 7), Fellaini 10, Pienaar 8; Cahill 7; Saha 6 (Vaughan 87 n/a)