First, we applaud SAFC LAdies for a crucial 4-1 win at Doncaster Belles. Then stand by for the latest edition of Rob Hutchison‘s irreverent Devil’s Advocate, in which he may take a view directly contrary to your own …
Doncaster Belles 1-4 SAFC Ladies. Match report at http://www.safc.com/news/ladies-news/2016/september/report-ladies-cruise-past-belles
And now for Rob:
Another week, another drama in the life of Sunderland. A decent draw at Southampton and the closure of that window were the highlights of the week.
It was disappointing to see Sunderland didn’t sell out the away end at the weekend. Maybe support is waning a touch already, maybe a few people are still on their holidays but you’d have thought we would have sold out, especially as the away tickets were subsidised ending up to be just £20 a pop.
It was a decent performance. Rodwell was the star man, playing that crucial O’Shea role in front of the back four and he stifled anything that looked like coming through the centre. He looks to have finally found his sea legs and will probably be one of the first names on the team sheet going forward if he carries on in this manner.
The transfer window has caused much debate, and like many others I’ve been left disappointed.
In last week’s column I commented that we appeared to be finally getting our house in order by pulling in the purse strings, and what do we do, splurge £14m on a (N)Dong no one’s ever heard of.
In the end we broadly overspent with a gross spend this window of some £28m and what have we got for it? Two loanees, a free out of contract bod (who can pass, it has to be said), and a scattergun array of youngsters for an awful lot of dosh.
We could have saved £6m by passing on McNair and the Love machine and promoting more from within, which by and large seems to be already bearing fruit. Are these two better than Robson and Greenwood? I’m not so sure.
At least we saved money by not wasting more on a striker. While our need is great, there are some excellent out of contract bargains around should we need cover for Defoe.
Would Sess, NB52, or Adebayor do any worse than our current crop? Of course not. Need a keeper? Chris Kirkland or Mark Schwarzer are available and would provide over. Keep counting those pennies and we’ll be back in the black in no time.
The best bit of business this week was keeping strong on Kone. No matter what money Everton threw at it we were not for turning, and now maybe Moyes has the player he can build a team around. A spine of Pickford, Kone, Rodwell, and Defoe will be just fine, PROVIDED they all stay fit.
The future’s bright, the future’s Mackem and under Moyes, youth will prevail.