MON day: a fine start?

M Salut
offers some advice to Martin O’Neill on the fines he may wish to consider imposing after yesterday’s defeat-from-the-jaws-of-victory at Molineux …

The competitionclick here – to come up with a new name for Martin O’Neill column at Salut! Sunderland is still open.

OK, the new manager does not yet know he’s to have one. But whether he chooses to sent out post-match e-mails or rely on simple statements and comments, his thoughts will be distilled on these pages just as Steve Bruce’s were.

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The Poll Recount: Liverpool’s penalty, Suarez’s hands, Richardson’s card

Graham Poll offers his thoughts on the weekend controversies in each Monday’s Mail. Sometimes we agree, sometimes not. This occasional column will explore those of his verdicts that find us at odds with our own …

Today, Graham Poll insists Kieran Richardson should have been sent off when Phil Dowd awarded the penalty to Liverpool. He mocks the perfectly plausible argument that Suraez, as Dowd saw it, was heading away from goal and may even have pushed the ball too far to be able to control it. He was emphatically not making a simple tour round Mignolet to tap the ball home, much as he may have wished.

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Liverpool Soapbox: from Dowdly benevolence to gradual control

It was a grand day out: I enjoyed watching both sets of supporters applaud a besuited Steven Gerrard as he walked round the touchline, smiling and singing autographs; I enjoyed seeing as many of ours applaud the traditional Gerry & The Pacemakers singalong as booed it, and I enjoyed seeing Liverpool fans applaud the superb touches of Stéphane Sessegnon (one Sunday paper’s rating of 5/10 was laughable). And Pete Sixsmith took enormous heart from a tremendous Sunderland fightback: for once, as he put it to me afterwards, deserving the cliché “very much a game of two halves” …

Another game with the once mighty Reds gets mired in controversy. We’ve had the beach ball, the back pass and the dive, which made it 2-1 to Liverpool on iffy decisions. Our turn this time, as Phil Dowd gave Kieran Richardson a considerable benefit of the doubt and showed him a yellow instead of a red.

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Who are you? We’re Aston Villa (2) – still down on Dowd


Between losing his wallet and agonising over university options, young Josh Henwood* had plenty of reasonable excuses for his late response to our appeal for a Villa fan to preview tomorrow’s game. But he emerged from his papal nom de guerre – he’s PopeJosh at the VillaTalk site – with interesting thoughts on Villa, SAFC, England and, oddly enough, referees …

AND WOULD BELIEVE? yet another Villa fan (this time from within Gary McAllister diving distance of the Stadium of Light) speaks to Salut! tonight …

Salut! Sunderland
Birmingham at home and Villa away in the space of a few days. Is all this rubbing shoulders with the second city good for us

I was going to say before Saturday that it wasn’t what you wanted at all! But after the results I’m scared of the prospect of playing you guys. We can’t seem to get a good win going despite good performances, and you seem to be getting points with (no offence intended) not-so-great performances. By the looks of it, this Midlands weekend might actually benefit you much more than you thought.

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