Martin’s Musings on an excruciating defeat: Middlesbrough’s ‘free spirit’ leaves SAFC ‘disappointed’

Jake's imagination

Disapppointed, it is fair to say, was a word heard often on Steve Bruce’s lips. It annoyed many supporters no end. And it somehow seems entirely the wrong response to this latest setback in the fortunes of Sunderland AFC, implying as it does that we would have progressed further in this uncommonly winnable of competitions if only all our flair, sense of adventure and endeavour had paid off. As opposed to the reason for the exit being, as Pete Sixsmith called, is ‘the most inept performance since the last most inept performance, clueless and brainless’. Let us hear what the boss had to say in the knowledge that sterner analysis is in the minds of others …


Dear Colin,

We’re obviously disappointed. We didn’t do well enough.

We were unable to score a goal to give ourselves a chance in the game.

We had an opportunity to get through to the quarter finals of the competition and we failed.

During the course of the season you meet a number of tests and this is the first one. We have to be able to come through this.

We have to pick ourselves up, which is easy to say, but we didn’t play well enough and we didn’t give our supporters enough to get enthused about.

Jake says: 'the season just got even worse'

Middlesbrough came with a totally free spirit and enjoyed the game. If they won, great, if not it wouldn’t have been make or break for their season.

However, for us this was a big night and we’ve failed the test.

I think you learn more about people in adversity. We need to get a grip of the situation and prepare ourselves for Saturday, it’s a different competition and it’s a big game for us.

All the best,

Beware of forgeries
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4 thoughts on “Martin’s Musings on an excruciating defeat: Middlesbrough’s ‘free spirit’ leaves SAFC ‘disappointed’”

  1. What a load of rubbish,it wasn’t a make or break night for the Boro…..yes it was it will most probably propel us to the premier now…shame you won’t be there when we are….lets face it you have one of the worst managers in the premier at the minute and a team tahats in the worst 5…….the Mags must be P**sing themselve laughing at you

  2. A very brief musing this week,and no wonder.Our “grip” is fine it is creating chances we need to put more effort into.Even at home to an inferior side we seem unable(afraid) to really have a go,it will not win over the fans and they are the ones who will decide MONs fate.

    Why is Sess trying to beat 3 men running straight at the heart of defense?Why can Johnson not get a decent cross in,ditto for McClean,why are our corners so lousy(as always)why is no one making space or giving options when we have possession in midfield?

    Fletcher had to come deeper and deeper to get some ball and even ended up playing winger at some points….what is going on please????

  3. Kev – in my opinion it is not the lack of a decent striker that is the problem but the fact that this current team is not creating chances. Last night I turned to my mate, sitting to the right of me, after five minutes and said “we’ve shown more attacking intent so far this game than we have in the previous four.” A minute later the bloke to his right said almost exactly the same. We started brightly but then after ten minutes Boro got back into the game. Although we spent more time in the opposition’s half than we have done for ages, there weren’t really that many good chances created.

    I made the point, and heard many others say the same thing, that there is hardly any movement off the ball and no-one in midfield is looking for the defence splitting pass.

    Elsewhere on the site others are supporting MON’s tactics saying that a solid defence is a platform on which we can build. That it is better to draw 0-0 than lose 3-4. Well I hope they are right because my feelings are that when a team goes out to keep a clean sheet at the expense of looking to win the game, they are more likely to lose 0-1 than win 1-0. Furthermore, when a team is failing to create chances regularly, then when the need becomes more urgent it is not part of their make up and scoring becomes even harder.

    In no way am I anti MON and in no way do I think we should be getting on his back but I do believe that we need to look at how to break down opposition defences. My fear now is that he will look at last night’s result and Saturday will see another defensive display – another 0-0 and another afternoon of frustration for those of us in the stands.

  4. MON needs to start looking for a decent striker who can sniff out the goal, Fletcher is Ok but has never been a prolific goal scorer, we lack options in the final third, if we want to compete with the top ten in the Prem then things need to change and soon before we hit freefall.

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