Malcolm Dawson writes….I was OK for the first 60 minutes. Despite all the pressure from the home side I felt the boys were coping well. Then as the old song says “time goes by so slowly……but time can do so much” and the old nerves started to get the better of me. The oft held doubts crept in and with 92 minutes and 30 seconds on the clock I still thought we might concede. But maybe the fact that a block from Coates went wide and a Billy Jones deflection hit the woodwork and was scrambled to safety were the omens that we would come away with the point we needed. OK we had chances and Norman Stanley might have finished more clinically on a couple of occasions in seasons past but hey let’s not quibble. This was a sterling, solid, backs to the wall performance and whilst the bus wasn’t exactly parked, it was in the lay-by with the engine ticking over and the players deserved the result because of the performances they have put in since the Little General arrived.
Pete Sixsmith’s post match text said “I have aged ten years in the last 90 minutes. Great defending and commitment.”
Dick was understandably emotional as the final whistle went. He says he’ll give his answer as to whether he’ll stay on sometime next week. A tug of love perhaps between mevr Advocaat and SAFC? Let’s hope he can persuade her that Sunderland is after all a special club. The pharmacies on Wearside were well stocked with blood pressure medication before kick off but now it can all be returned to the back room until the new season.
After a few weepies here’s the Dutchman’s post match e-mail to M Salut and other members of the red and white persuasion.
It was a really great feeling for our players, for our fans and for the people at the office. Everybody works so hard to give everybody the right feeling and this is great for the club.
It was a special match because we played against an excellent team in Arsenal, but the way we worked made us deserve it and seeing the fans after the game was a great feeling. We all worked so hard every day to get results out of the last six games and we have only lost once. I’m very proud of everyone involved with Sunderland.
We had a great goalkeeper as well today with great saves and I’m very happy. The whole team were desperate to get the result and you saw at the end some of them couldn’t run anymore because it takes so much pressure out of you.
Every player was brilliant – playing or not playing – they gave everything and we really deserve it.
Thanks for your support,
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