Can the new-look Lads make our Canadian diarist Martin Bates‘s trip “home” feel all the more worthwhile?
Martin has already vividly described his first few days back on Wearside, where bis parents were born and raised before emigrating, and promises more. He has a ticket for the Liverpool game and also for the next home tie, against Man Utd a week later.
How sweet the flight home would feel if, somehow, it was made after Sunderland’s points tally had risen to 25. Even a draw and a win would send him home happy.
Guess the Score, Lads and Lasses. Still just for fun as no new sponsor has appeared out of the mist to stump up for a weekly prize.
Here’s how I summed up our chances in my preview for ESPN FC, where I’m boldly tipping us for a 1-1 draw:
After winning plaudits but no points from Tuesday’s 1-0 defeat to Manchester City, Sunderland visit Liverpool on Saturday under no illusions about the uphill nature of their fight for survival.
… But this was a hugely encouraging performance from the new-look Allardyce team.
There were debuts for three of his transfer window signings — Lamine Kone, Wabi Kahzri and Dame N’Doye — and a magnificent display of composure and skill from a fourth, Jan Kirchhoff. If the spirit shown against City can be maintained, the visit to Liverpool need not be one of those games supporters tend to file under bound-to-lose.