Salut! Sunderland is not too keen on anonymous Who are You?s. It seems bizarre to insist on being a nameless supporter but we must respect all choices, especially when we’re the ones asking for favours. Rarely, we grant @TalkReading* that anonymity (but then the alternative was not to have a Reading (a) Who are You?). His/her explanation? ‘@TalkRaeding is completely anonymous on Twitter (keeps the magic going!) hope that is okay with you – would still love to help. The replies are good all the same …
Reading vs SAFC Guess the Score: the clock ticking down
Monsieur Salut writes: by the time you read this, I’ll be on holiday and trying very hard not to think about football …
We have an oddly anonymous Reading Who are You? still to come – maybe they’re all recluses in the Thames Valley – and the result, as I write before the Leeds game, is unlikely to matter a huge amount to us.
SAFC vs Norwich City Who are You?: on Grabban, Delia … and Ricky van Wolfswinkel
Monsieur Salut writes: the curtain seems almost down on as bad a season as most Sunderland fans have experienced. Thanks Ellis Short – near the top of the Championship table for money spent of agents’ fees, near the bottom for investment on players and next to bottom of the league when not actually bottom.
Martin Penney is our Norwich City interviewee. He has missed all of five of the Canaries’ home games in 30 years. He’s from the Norwich MyFootballWriter site and the dog you see above, poised to bark loudly at the Black Cats, is ‘a Patterdale called Geezer after the best bassist in the entire world – Geezer Butler from Black Sabbath’. There you have it, and here are his excellent responses to Salut! Sunderland‘s questions …
Norwich Guess the Score: to think we’ll be at the World Cup
Monsieur Salut writes: a family holiday looms so this is being prepared between Black Monday, perhaps the defining moment of a wretched season when even a half-decent performance was undone by the usual defensive frailties, and whatever happens at Leeds. I leave it to Salut! Sunderland colleagues to update this introduction as they see fit after Elland Road. For now, I shall combine the usual prize Guess the Score competition for the next home game, Norwich City and a rare chance to record a double, with some thoughts from elsewhere on a competition that seems to have little or nothing to do with the preoccupations of a club heading for League One (or not, according to results) …
Birmingham pull clear. Anyone for 0-1 in Leeds-SAFC Guess the Score?
We have got used to fantasy entries in Guess the Score. You know, the ones that predict a Sunderland win (especially if there’s already been one in living memory).
SAFC vs Sheffield Wednesday prize Guess the Score: can we do it again?
Seven games to go and after that resounding win at Derby on a very Good Friday, Sheffield Wednesday are the Easter Monday visitors to the Stadium of Light.
For once, it looks as if we may have to do without a Who are You? interview. Monsieur Salut did find a willing candidate. There’s a good reason why she may have overlooked it, or simply not found the time she expected to have: her dad, a lifelong Owls fan, died recently.
Who are You? Recalling Mart Poom’s header and SuperKev as our Derby hero
Guy Pearson*, introduced to Salut! Sunderland by the first Who are You? candidate of the season, his follow Derby County fan Nick Britten, does not think the Rams are good enough for the Premier League. He is not not even confident of making the playoffs, despite the hotel rooms he and his pals booked back in January to be handy for the final. Viewed from our position, his troubles seem piffling. It will come as no consolation to Sunderland supporters to hear that Guy does think we’ll improve on our current position by the end of the season – he predicts we’ll finish second bottom. Stand by for a thoughtful interview with a realistic supporter who knows his stuff.
And on links between our clubs, Guy remembers that extraordinary Mart Poom equaliser while we remind him of a SuperKev hat trick at Pride Park …
Derby vs SAFC Guess the Score. We may be mugs but the prizes continue
In which Monsieur Salut decides to keep the Guess the Score competition running, with prizes, until the final whistle sounds at the end of the home banker against Wolves on May 6 to bring our glorious Championship campaign to a close …
The season began with Derby County on a Friday night. Now that so many of us have written off the season, it seems almost academic that the final spurt to, er, deserved relegation/improbable escape (delete according to choice) should start with Derby on a Friday night.
When it comes to Guess the Score, I’ll adopt the words of Bamber Gascoigne from an earlier television age: I’ve started so I’ll finish. [Update: oops, CSB corrects my memory: it was Magnus Magnusson’s catchphrase on Mastermind]
Despite thoughts of withdrawing the modest prize in protest at the appalling betrayal by Sunderland AFC of its supporters, we shall rise above such pettiness. The mug manufacturers of Weardale – our suppliers, Personalised Football Gifts – need not fret after all. Eight more games = up to eight more mugs to be ordered and delivered.
PNE Who are You?: ‘stick with it Mackems; you’re a big club with loud, passionate fans’
Monsieur Salut writes: thinking Kevin Kilbane had a bit of a raw deal from SAFC fans isn’t the same as thinking he was a rip-roaring success for us. I saw him play badly, but also saw him play well and still be slagged off. To our PNE ‘Who are You?’ interviewee Norm Shilcock*, he’s a ‘great homegrown hero’ and he should know because he used to teach philosophy.
Norm, who ‘blogs, blags and comments’ at www.thesocialnorm.co.uk, nearly didn’t make it to Salut! Sunderland. Incompetence sometimes rules around here and I sent the questions to someone else not just once but twice before realising. So hats off to him for turning in his answers so quickly. Stand by for some terrific thoughts on us, Grayson and Coleman, David Beckham, PNE’s chances of staying up if they made it to the Premier League …
SAFC vs PNE Guess the Score: the Coleman factor and keeping faith
Monsieur Salut writes: here’s another Guess the Score. Pete Sixsmith may or may not enter but is already fearful of another home defeat, sensing that Preston North End are simply too well organised for us. As each matchday passes, the exercise of predicting results looks more academic. The point may soon come at which not even blind faith and predictions of SAFC-winning scorelines can any longer make a difference to the way things will end up in May …
Salut! Sunderland is not about to wash its hands of Sunderland AFC, or even to wash its hands of the labour of love running this site entails.