Here Pete Sixsmith captures the glory and shame, hope and despair, excitement and ennui of the Sunderland matchday experience. When, rarely, Pete is absent or delayed, a supersub does it for him and the seven-word verdict is preceded by an asterisk. Pete’s full analysis of the game will usually appear within a day or two.
Did we seriously look at any stage of this awful game as if we might win or even draw. It was a frankly dreadful first half, comfortably the worst Sixer could recall being subject to all season. Monsieur Salut watched a stop-start internet stream to his French bunker until he could bear no more and retreated to the safe two pairs of hands, owned by Nick Barnes and Gary Bennett.
Bennett was chuffed to be drawing at half time; he thought the best that could be said was that having failed to string two passes together for 45 minutes, we could be no worse in the second half. I had a stream again after the interval and we weren’t worse as it happens, but nor were we good enough to stop Rovers scoring.
Finally we started playing. Bendtner might have been sharper to a McClean cross and Ji, on as a substitute, missed an open goal Sixer or I would have buried, at any rate 30 years ago. For a few minutes, we looked as if a goal might be within our grasp; then we stopped playing again and Rovers scored again. “Two down and hopeless,” Pete texted from Ewood Park.
Someone else may wait up long enough to post Martin’s Musings. It won’t be M Salut!
The full Sixer’s Sevens archive – see link below – sums up what all Sunderland supporters feel, from darkest gloom to sublime elation, in the words of one who is usually there …
March 20 2012 Blackburn Rovers (0) 2 SAFC (0) 0 Very disappointing. We looked tired and uninterested
March 17 2012 FA Cup 46h round: Everton (1) 1 SAFC (1) 1 Started well, on top but pushed back
March 10 2012 SAFC (0) 1 Liverpool (0) 0 Better by far than an average Liverpool
March 4 2012 Newcastle United (0) 1 SAFC (1) 1Players gave everything and deserved to win
Feb 25 2012 West Bromwich Albion (2) 4 SAFC (0) 0 Baggies better by far as bubble bursts
Feb 18 2012 FA CUP 5th round: SAFC (1) 2 Arsenal (0) A wonderfully gritty performance brings deserved victory
To see Sixer’s Sevens in full, click here. If an asterisk precedes the comment, the words that follow are the work of someone else because Pete is for once absent from the game or his verdict has been delayed …