Salut! Sunderland AFC (Against Football Cheats)

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“Old bald headed bloke” * – see comments – considers the response from Wearside, the East End and beyond to the Jones/Ilunga incident during the 2-2 draw between SAFC and West Ham …

West Ham supporters have rallied gamely to the cause of their side following events at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.

They have done it with a mixture of solid defensive work and aggressive counter-attack (there have also been a couple of more cretinous offerings, but the ratio of joined-up thinking to no thinking at all has been high).

Read moreSalut! Sunderland AFC (Against Football Cheats)

So how is Herita Ilunga’s face? (2)


And another thing
. Shouldn’t a player – any player, West Ham or Sunderland or whoever – be subject to an automatic substitution if he writhes in agony, Illunga-style, on the ground?

It just doesn’t seem safe for them to get up and resume play, once the penalty/card has been duly awarded, as if nothing had happened. Who knows what damage they are storing up for themselves in later life?

Read moreSo how is Herita Ilunga’s face? (2)

How Sixer observed Birmingham v Sunderland


Pete Sixsmith was called upon again by The Observer to sum up a Sunderland game. What a pity they didn’t ask last week …

THE FANS’ PLAYER RATINGS AND VERDICT

Pete Sixsmith, SalutSunderland.com All the beachballs on Scarborough beach would have been needed for us to get anything here. Our inability to beat some of the grittier teams is worrying. City dug in, denied us space and deserved their win. Our midfield never had control and Cattermole was badly missed. Bent should have equalised when we had them on the back foot near the end, but it would have been a point stolen rather than gained. Steve Bruce needs to look at how we approach games like this.

The fan’s player ratings Gordon 8; Bardsley 7, Turner 6, Ferdinand 6, Richardson 6; Malbranque 6 (Campbell 68 6), Cana 6 (Zenden 68 6), Henderson 6 (McCartney 68 7), Reid 7; Jones 6, Bent 6

Paul Rivers, Observer reader It was a deserved win. Sunderland started well, but after the first 10 minutes we pretty much bossed it. Ferguson was the key – he played as sweeper in front of the back four and cleaned everything up. It also made a huge difference playing with two up front; Benitez makes such a nuisance of himself and he linked up very well with Jerome. Steve Bruce got a good reception from the Birmingham fans, while our new owner Carson Yeung must think it’s like this every week!

The fan’s player ratings Hart 5; Carr 7, Ridgewell 8, Johnson 8, Dann 7; McFadden 8 (O’Connor 76 n/a), Ferguson 8, Bowyer 7, Larsson 8 (Carsley 84 n/a); Jerome 7 (McSheffrey 76 n/a), Benítez 9

The A to Z of Sunderland’s Marseille connection

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The injury to Lee Cattermole seriously tests the strength of our squad. But Colin Randall feels that in Cana and Zenden, Sunderland have two of this season’s canniest Premier acquisitions …

Confirmation that Lee Cattermole will be out for three months means that we will come to rely ever more heavily on the qualities of our pair of Marseillais. A for the Albanian Lorik Cana, captain of club and country (and captain at OM until his move), Z for Boudewijn “Bolo” Zenden.

The loss of Cattermole – cue for abject apology from the Liverpool players and officials who whinged so pitilessly when this strong, battling midfielder crumpled in a heap – is a serious blow.

He has been hugely impressive in every game since arriving on a transfer that, if we are honest, divided Sunderland fans.

Read moreThe A to Z of Sunderland’s Marseille connection