Soapbox: losing face

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The Herita Ilunga soap opera continues. Pete Sixsmith could hardly let it go unremarked in his report of a grim start by Sunderland followed by stirring fightback and lingering controversy …

Well, where to start after a fairly eventful afternoon at The Stadium of Thugs – according to weeping and wailing West Ham fans.

Let’s start with a moderate first half performance that began quite well and then faded badly as the Happy Hammers took what could and should have been a commanding lead.

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October 1968: hammered, but the injustice still Hurst

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Colin Randallremembers highs and lows from 40+ years of games between Sunderland and West Ham …

On the face of it, this does not look the worst line-up the English top flight has seen:

Montgomery; Irwin, Hurley, Palmer, Harvey; Suggett, Porterfield, Herd; Harris, Brand, Hughes

Nor, necessarily, does this have the appearance of a world-beating XI:

Ferguson; Bonds, Stephenson, Moore, Charles; Redknapp, Boyce, Peter; Brooking, Hurst, Sissons

King Charlie & co clearly had an offday.

Read moreOctober 1968: hammered, but the injustice still Hurst