Salut! Podcast: former Sunderland favourite Martin Smith talks Southampton and Tottenham

Are the cigars out? It’s a testament to how far the club has progressed in recent years that this season is deemed a huge failure, writes Stephen Goldsmith. A failure of sorts, anyway. Sucessful survival campaigns have been celebrated in my era of growing up supporting Sunderland, and I much prefer it that we’re at a place where heavy investment seems regular and Premier League football is the minimum of expectations. There’ll be a final podcast of the season next week, where our investigation of the crap we’ve witnessed (for what that’s worth) will get underway.

For now though, we concentrate loosely on the crapness we witnessed last Sunday, as the players failed to grab three points that would have saved us all from watching the Arsenal game and hyperventerlating every time Wigan got their foothold on the game. Poor Wigan, there’s a side that didn’t deserve to go down. Even Michael Owen tweeted as much. God help us listening to him co-commentate next season, it may even make us wish for  more of Andy Townsend. Ok, I take that back. God knows who is the less of the two evils in that particular match up. It doesn’t bear thinking about.

Wigan didn’t deserve to stay up, by the way. We have more points and beat them twice. Anyway, I’ve gone off on one. On this week’s podcast:

  • Former Sunderland player Martin Smith makes comparisons between the job Di Canio had to do and that of when Peter Reid first arrived.
  • We hear from Paolo Di Canio
  • As always, we have the ramblings of Gareth Barker to cope with.
  • We’re joined by Alan Fisher, creator of Tottenham on my mind blog ( who gives us the Spurs perspective of this Sunday’s game. It’s still important to them, remember.

Get the podcast on iTunes or stream it here:


9 thoughts on “Salut! Podcast: former Sunderland favourite Martin Smith talks Southampton and Tottenham”

  1. Keith- I was all for the stability too. Thing is and it’s something touched upon in the podcast, is that I think the problem lies with a club mentality. We’re stuck in a loop of buying ‘Sunderland type players’ and appointing ‘Sunderland type managers’. The problem is this yields Sunderland type results time after time. The only variation we’ve had is Keane.

    It’s time for a metaphorical tusnami at Sunderland in my opinion. Time to get modern with our approach.

    Building a new footballing philosophy, club identity, intelligent scouting, director of football, head coach, youth team right through to first team playing the same systems etc

  2. Can a very well thought out question, invoke no discussion, why do we get involved?

    • Keith. Salut! Sunderland asks something like that every day. A number of people put their time and effort into posting intelligent, thoughtful articles about every aspect of Sunderland AFC and the response from readers is often so thin as to make us wonder whether it is worthwhile. On the other hand, some postings attract a huge and equally thoughtful electronic postbag. A function of busy lives and selective engagement, I suppose.

      But let’s hear it for the man who once said the reports here were often so good that a reply/comment was unnecessary!

  3. That’s why Short is going down the head coach route. Working alongside a DoF, they are easier and less turbulent to replace individually – see West Brom. Swansea also have a structure that allows for this, though it isn’t the DoF, it’s the knowledgable chairman. Ellis needs someone to take care of the transfers etc for him while allowing Di Canio to concentrate on coaching the players.

    This is how football is evolving.

  4. How can succesx become achievable without some sort of stabilty and settled managerial personnel. We keep sacking our manager, just when we seemed to be developing some sort of consistency. New managerx are brought in to change things it doesn’t work, start again. It is time to intelligently choose the correct man for the job. MON although he seemed to be the natural and popular choice didn’t work, was he too old? I don’t know but this time it has to work failure can’t be an option or we will become a Wolves or a Pompey:-)

  5. This season has certainly been a failure.But what worries me more is can SAFC find the combination of manager and players to put it right.

    Years ago we complained that the club would or could not not invest in the right type of players. Well , ES certainly has ,but still no success.

    The club has appointed a variety of different types of managers ,McCartney ,Kean,Bruce ,and eventually the fans choice, O’Neill,but still no success.

    So over the years why have Fulham, Everton,Villa ,WBA all managed for the most part to establish themselves in the top half of the league ?

    • We appear to be going down the West Brom route now. It’s frustrating beyond words, I agree. We have the owner giving us cash and who is now doing as we all boldly predict we would do in his situation – overhaul the scouting system. If it goes tits up again, just who do we blame? Players try, they’re just crap.

  6. I’m agreeing its a failure, I’m saying relegation scraps were the norm for me growing up and we usually came out of them in the division below. My point is that we’re supposed to be better than that now so it’s a sign things have generally improved that being involved in them isn’t deemed acceptable.

    Not sure what you’re getting defensive about.

  7. ” It’s a testament to how far the club has progressed in recent years that this season is deemed a huge failure, writes Stephen Goldsmith.”

    Sorry how does that work? We just escaped the drop by the skin of our teeth, having spent millions upon millions in recent seasons. Not sure that I can agree with that. OK this is a whole lot better than the years under Butcher and Buxton and it may be a bit better than the 15 and 19 point seasons but those were the days when the managers were offering a couple of Milky Ways and a Mars bar for some of our players with the selling clubs holding out for the family bag of Maltesers that Fat Bob had scoffed already.

    It might be better than those days but “testament to how far the club has progressed”

    Give ower man!

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