Martin’s Musings: O’Neill speaks and a column is born

The title for the sayings of Martin O’Neill, as they are collected for these pages, has been chosen and you see it above.

That means a Salut! Sunderland mug – is there no limit to our generosity? – will be heading the way of “Rob”, whose suggestion it was.

Of course we do not yet know whether the new manager will send out post-match e-mails in the manner of Steve Bruce and, for one night only, after Wolves, Eric Black. Bruce’s missives became a must-read around here, but also became an easy target as results worsened. But Bruce’s Banter, and the shortlived Black’s Bluster, are no more.

Today, MON walked into a press conference, his first as SAFC manager, looked at the scores of assembled journalists and asked: “Is this the best they could muster?”

Text updates from the SAFC official site gave the highlights of what followed, all short, sharp soundbites which he may have expanded upon later. Some readers will also be able to glean more from TV and radio interviews conducted after the conference.

* Sunderland is a fantastic club!

* That type of performance on Sunday summed up Sunderland’s season so far – it ebbed away a bit and it’s something I’m hoping to address to the best of my ability

* The game with Blackburn is a very important game for us – we’re all aware of that

* There’s an energy about this football club and passion – I’m hoping to take that and give the place a lift

* There is frustration around the place but we’re going to try and galvanise that

* I feel it’s important to start with a clean slate. Everybody gets a chance. It’s a genuine privilege to be here … so energised about being here, it’s hard to describe

* I arrived on Saturday to see the Lads before they went off to Wolves – the weather and the training ground reminded me of Glasgow. It’s like when you wake up and open the curtains and don’t know if it’s June or November – I’m so happy to be back

* (when asked about the England managership): not on my mind whatsoever. This is the job I want

* (about why he did not join five seasons ago): despite discussions with Niall Quinn (I) wasn’t in a position to take the job due to personal reasons

* I would love to be really successful at this football club!

* Eric Black kindly took charge on Sunday, but I’ll be bringing in Steve Walford and Seamus McDonagh as part of the backroom staff

Colin Randall, with customary thanks to Mrs Logic for her photographic skills

11 thoughts on “Martin’s Musings: O’Neill speaks and a column is born”

  1. Funny how the incentive to comment has waned since Brucies departure.We are in a “phoney war” situation,with nothing to get our teeth into, as it were.

    Roll on sunday and we can recommence battle.

    As an brief aside Lawrenson on 5 live today says we only need a cenre forward and we will be absolutley fine.We should have made him manager then.

  2. @Michael

    Interestingly, the Echo is adamant that MON will not be recalling Gyan, though he will be ‘reviewing’ the loan. Whatever that means.

    It’s the national press that is going with the recall angle. It’s possible they have information the Echo doesn’t, or it could be that they’ve misinterpreted what’s been printed in our provincial paper.

    It’s a fascinating situation, this. Made all the more intriguing with Gyan sending tweets wishing luck to ‘our new manager.’

    I’d hazard a guess that Gyan himself is anticipating a return to the SoL following his payday tour. I wouldn’t think the supporters would welcome him too warmly though. Certainly no one in my Twitter timeline would be happy.

    And with rumours of £40m for MON to spend this calendar year, one wonders if we’ll need him back.

    Frankly I’d be surprised if he rejoined us, regardless of manager. The money we got was a nice incentive, but I can’t think Messrs Quinn and Short were best pleased by his departure.

  3. I see that some of the press boys are hinting that MON is considering recalling Gyan from his loan. I am sure that he knows that he cannot, and even if he could he should not because (a) writing 40,000 letters of apology would severely disrupt Baby Jet’s training regime (b )that he will miss up to six weeks because of the ACN

  4. Really like the new look site – a good job by Sam & M. Salut. Still think “O’Neill’s Spiel” was better though!

  5. I don’t think MON is under any illusions about the size of the task ahead of him.

    I have always regarded him as an excellent Manager which is supported by the fact that every club he has managed he left in a better position than they were when he started.

    He inherits a team which although low in confidence is full of ‘coasters’ who regard their current employment as a bit of a stroll.there are a number who need the required rocket up their rear ends. Brown, O’shea, the whole midfield and Bendtner would do for starters.

    We have under-achieved dreadfully so far this season and MON is the correct man to sort this lot out.

  6. Here, courtesy of a site called are a few more snippets:

    * Obviously we are in a little bit of trouble at the moment. We have been losing games and we could have had a few more points on the board

    * We had a training session today. I would have expected them to be positive and they were just that

    * (on boyhood allegiance to SAFC): I don’t really want to make too much of it, but I was a genuine supporter … Where I was brought up there were two teams you could support – Celtic or Rangers, and everyone else had an English team as well. Other kids my age chose Leeds, Manchester United or Liverpool and I took Sunderland because Charlie Hurley was playing at centre-half, he was a big Irish centre-half.

    * Like I said, I don’t want to play too much on the boyhood hero thing as it will probably only give you a two-game grace. We are in the results business here. I want to make it a success if I can

    * Confidence is not at its highest at the moment, it has ebbed away and I will try to address that

  7. “Everybody gets a chance…” fair enough. He’s not making any wild promises or condemning anyone out of hand. I thought he’d probably bring Walford with him. McDonagh is “Jim” McDonagh, right, the goalkeeping coach, also ex-Villa? Useful man to have around.
    So O’Neill starts with a mixture of energy and frustration. A guy like him should be able to turn that frustration into more energy. For the first time in quite a while, I’m looking forward to the weekend…

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