The personal e-mails from Steve Bruce after each match have not yet resumed. When they do, we’ll find a collective name for them. Bruce’s Blarney is tempting; last season, there were times when some Salut! Sunderland readers may have thought Bruce’s Bluster would fit.
But it is useful, all the same, to see what the manager has to say, even if the e-mail (personal to me but also thousands of others) contains thoughts marshalled or massaged for circulation by a press officer. And today’s thoughts, after a 0-0 draw with Borussia Monchengladbach left us winless but with positives to draw from three friendlies in Germany, were demonstrably his own since he gave voice to them on SAFC TV.
Bruce thought the game a great work-out, the tour a “tough training camp”, the result – predictably, since this is pre-seasonspeak – of no importance and the sending-off of Titus Bramble unnecessary:
“It was a great work-out for us and we’re here for one thing – to make sure we’re physically right. This game was a big test for us as we’ve been training for only a couple of weeks and played two games in four games against Bundesliga opposition.
I’m not bothered about the result – everyone’s come through, everyone’s okay.
The incident with Titus is going to be the one that stands out, but other than that everyone is fine.
I can’t understand it in a pre-season friendly. “I think the referee’s got to understand that players are going to be tired in pre-season.
Okay, he has committed a foul, but would 20,000 people out there want to see 11 against 10 in a friendly?
But even with 10 men we had chances. The fitness is still the most important thing for me.”
To which I would add only that the tweeted updates from safc.com were an immense improvement on the ever-so-slow line-by-line commentary to which we have been accustomed. Bravo, lads.