Wembley and Safe: Sixer closes series, applauding Borini, Cattermole – and Jose Fonte?

Jake is sleeping soundly
Jake is sleeping soundly

Monsieur Salut, borrowing a bit from Churchill, writes: this is not the beginning of the end. In fact, it’s officially the end of the grand Wembley and Bust Safe series. If you were within an ace of sending your own, it will have to appear as a comment. Pete Sixsmith casts his magisterial eyes over the vast majority of Sunderland matches and it is right that his views should serve as the climax to Salut! Sunderland‘s run of end-of-season reviews. Many thanks to all who have contributed; I hope readers have found their efforts stimulating … read on to see why Sixer is grateful to a certain Southampton defender

Read moreWembley and Safe: Sixer closes series, applauding Borini, Cattermole – and Jose Fonte?

Wembley and Safe: (8) Borini stars in Keir’s ratings for a crazy season

Jake is sleeping soundly
Jake is sleeping soundly

The Wembley and Safe series has produced some excellent reads but even good things, maybe especially good things, must come to an end. Pete Sixsmith’s series-closer has arrived so, unless any dawdlers who really, really meant to write something do so pretty smartish, they’ll find themselves left on the harbourside, the boat duly missed. Here are young Keir Bradwell‘s season-long ratings. His thoughts have been a refreshing addition to Salut! Sunderland’s reflections on the mysteries of life and we very much hope he returns with more of the same next season …

Read moreWembley and Safe: (8) Borini stars in Keir’s ratings for a crazy season

Wembley and Safe. Some words for the fans: (7) dignity, passion, belief …

Jake is sleeping soundly
Jake is sleeping soundly

The series is winding down. Pete Sixsmith, whose match reports have brightened these pages from the earliest times of Salut! Sunderland, will deliver his end-of-season verdict and that will be that. As Monsieur Salut returns from his little break in Sorrento – ‘Borini, Mannone, Giaccherini you said?,’ a young waiter trilled, admiring my command of Italian, ‘you’re a Sunderland supporter!’ – there may be just one more to fit in after this before Sixer has his say. Here’s Peter Lynn, aka Wrinkly Pete, with his own mixture of highs and lows, superbly pinpointing the magnificent efforts of the supporters all season long …

Read moreWembley and Safe. Some words for the fans: (7) dignity, passion, belief …

Wembley and Safe (5): go easy on the celebratory bubbly

Marcus: 'no more seasons quite like that, please'
Marcus: ‘exciting yes, but no more seasons quite like that, please’

Marcus Procopio came breezing in from Down Under a year ago with thoughts on last season’s great escape and a player-by-player assessment of the squad. He’s back with an exhaustive review of the season, what went wrong and what – in the end – went right …

Read moreWembley and Safe (5): go easy on the celebratory bubbly

Wembley and Safe (4): no Leeds, Blackburn and Middlesbrough after all

Ken by Jake
Ken by Jake

Ken Gambles does not write often enough for Salut! Sunderland but when he does, it’s worth reading (his call for football cheats to be made to wear pink mittens was priceless). Here’s his view on the season, with some end-of-term awards and gripes of his own …

Read moreWembley and Safe (4): no Leeds, Blackburn and Middlesbrough after all

Wembley and Safe (3): everything’s not all right

Jake is sleeping soundly again
Jake is sleeping soundly again

Jeremy Robson would be the first to acknowledge that he does not suffer fools gladly. Woe betide them, as our old teachers used to say, if the fools are currently wearing our red and white stripes. In an ideal Robson world, football would still be something viewed from the Clock Stand paddock of Roker Park, just to the left of the halfway line. Here’s Jeremy’s very particular take on the ups and downs of the season just ended …

Read moreWembley and Safe (3): everything’s not all right

Wembley and Safe (2): soiling the hands to get at the gleaming coins

Jake is sleeping soundly again
Jake is sleeping soundly again

Colin Randall writes: the Wembley and Bust Safe series will now get more controversial. It is possible to rejoice at our salvation, and acclaim the manner in which is was achieved, while considering the season as a whole, with obvious moments of exception, to have been dire. Rob Hutchison did modify his review after the victory over West Brom. I wonder how he’d change it again after joining the London and SE branch of the SAFC Supporters’ Association for the train journey to the final game …

Read moreWembley and Safe (2): soiling the hands to get at the gleaming coins

Wembley and Safe: Observing Sunderland, hailing Kidderminster & Carlisle fans, not Newcastle’s

obs

There seems nothing out of context about adding a Pete Sixsmith assessment of the season early: Sixer will, as happens every season, round up the Wembley and Safe series once it has run its course. But this is the slot where he tells the readership of Britain’s best newspaper (daily or Sunday), The Observer*, what he has made of what he has seen. His impressions changed towards the end of the season. Imagine what this would have looked like had Pete written it a month ago …

Read moreWembley and Safe: Observing Sunderland, hailing Kidderminster & Carlisle fans, not Newcastle’s