Viewed from Ipswich, Jack Ross’s strong start is a reason for jealousy


Source: Sunderland AFC via Facebook.

It may seem fanciful to suppose a team that beat us twice last season, and comfortably each time, and plays in a higher division should feel any need to envy Sunderland and Jack Ross. But look at Ipswich’s current plight – winless and second bottom of the Championship while two disappointing home draws have failed to push SAFC out of the League One top four – and you begin to see why William Sundin, the Tractor Boy (and Sunderland University graduate) writing this piece, is wondering which club is better off  …

Ipswich Town fans started this summer in a situation familiar to Sunderland supporters, having taken the plunge and finally said goodbye to Mick McCarthy.

Fortunately, Ipswich didn’t do as Sunderland once did and turn to Roy Keane, as they’d made that mistake a few years previously instead [though taking Sunderland from bottom to top may be seen by some as less than a mistake – Ed].

Instead, Ipswich’s owner Marcus Evans sought an exciting young replacement not yet entrenched on the managerial merry-go-round. Evans was keen to wait for Paul Hurst to complete his playoff adventure with Shrewsbury, but the other standout candidate Jack Ross was not so keen to wait around.

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Crowing About: why Coleman’s words are cutting the mustard

Jake: ‘click my image to join the Salut! Sunderland Facebook group’

For his second contribution to the pages of Salut! Sunderland,  Martin Crow compares and contrasts – favourably – the Chris Coleman way with words, when talking publicly about Sunderland AFC, with the mix of gibberish, gallows humour, boorishness, beyond-the-pale philosophy and heavy gloom that has gone before …

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Ipswich Town Who are You?: ‘my Mackem brother-in-law said SAFC would go up’

Monsieur Salut writes: on Twitter, where we found him, he goes by the name of ITFC COYB. Darren Elmy* is a Glasgow-based Ipswich Town fan who would normally have been at Saturday’s game as he loves visiting Sunderland and has Mackem family connections. Unfortunately he cannot make it but we do have his thoughts on both clubs and the match.

Darren’s a professional gambler; we hope he loses any stake he places on his predicted scoreline – 1-1 – but hammers the bookies if he hedges his bets with money on an emphatic home win …

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Sixer’s Ipswich Soapbox: a quick one, but who cares?


Sleek Sixer now …

John McCormick writes: there are cries from some of our readers for our manager to go, there are others saying he should have more time, and there are those saying it’s not his fault and there’s nothing he can do. I must confess I’m expecting any day to hear he’s been sacked or walked as it seems to be the SAFC way of dealing with things but I’m not sure if it would solve anything.  Pete Sixsmith, who has been to far more matches and lives much nearer to the action, was at last night’s debacle. What does he think? He’s past caring. Perhaps that tells us all we need to know …

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SAFC v Republic of Ireland: an unforgettable night with Niall, minus Keane

In the latest edition of Gambles’ Rambles, our regular contributor Ken Gambles pondered the worthy title ‘a reflective narrative on the role of altruism in a capitalist hegemony’ before deciding: ‘Nah, just a memory of Quinny’s testimonial.’ Monsieur Salut remembers it, too, as the game for which he bought a ticket knowing he had no hope of being there (remember those non-attendance tickets that boosted the proceeds?). He missed a great occasion, which special connections made greater still for Ken …

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Welcome, Arsenal, to the world of accidental clogging


Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s the embryo of a body of contrition hovering over the Emirates stadium as it dawns on Arsenal folk that their self-canonised saints of football may also, from time to time, stray from the path of purity …

Cesc Fabregas is a magical footballer, a convincing contender for any choice of the Premier League’s finest. He is also, necessarily, strong, fast and committed.

So realistic supporters, whether they are Gooners or follow Sunderland or Chelsea, Wolves or Stoke or indeed anyone else, can sympathise with Fabregas when he tells his manager he hadn’t the slightest wish to injure Stephen Ward of Wolves. Yet it was challenge that some felt merited a card of a different colour than the yellow shown by Mark Halsey.

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Who next for the England manager’s post?


Jeremy Robson ponders the list of possible contenders for the England job, if Fabio Capello does not stay on. He finds one omission surprising, though there is just a slight suspicion that he may be taking the Mick (and a much stronger suspicion about an SFR dongle’s ability to work on a French TGV, which explains why Jeremy’s piece was cut almost in half for most of the day …

Harry Redknapp
Roy Hodgson
Martin O’Neill
Stuart Pearce
Steve McClaren
Tony Pulis
Sam Allardyce
David Beckham
A N Other

are the candidates for the England manager’s job. Well, at least these are the
names that The Guardian feels worthy of inclusion in its list of potential replacements
for the beleaguered Italian.

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2002: screaming girls, Irish Troubles. World Cup memories (11)


Pete Sixsmith arrives at the penultimate stage of his journey to every World Cups from 1966 to 2006. From the 2002 tournament he remembers the McCarthy-Keano spat, wailing South Korean teenagers, Tommy Sorensen’s howlers and yet another Brazilian trophy …

It’s interesting that as you get older, the more recent memories don’t stay for very long, while the more distant ones linger. When speaking to Neil Martin a couple of weeks ago, I was able to picture the goals he scored in my boyhood far more clearly than I could those of say, Tore Andre Flo or Jon Stead.

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Salut! History (3): massacred by Middlesbrough, but Mick’s no quitter

keane mccarthy

In the first two extracts from his book, Sing When You’re Winning, Colin Irwin trod the familiar path of Sunderland’s history: early glory, post-war turbulence and 1973 fairytale (with as much literary licence as the Brothers Grimm). He left us with the anxiety of relegation-haunted fans as kickoff neared in SAFC v Boro in Jan 2006 …

Not that the nail biting lasts for long. Sunderland forget that Emanuel Pogatetz, the big lad strolling into their penalty area when Middlesbrough are awarded a free kick just outside the box, isn’t there to discuss the latest bargains at B&Q and may have evil intent.

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