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On 12/03/2018 at 4:21 PM, Frederick said:

All aboarrrrrd the promotion train...IF Cardiff and Fulham stop being as good as us, that is. Whooping Wolves was incredibly satisfying and a genuine mark of progress, they've humiliated us thrice in the past year but we wore them out in the second half, by the end it was getting a bit silly. I begrudge Bruce too much of the credit because we're a pretty expensive outfit that staggered for far too long but get us to the holy land of 17th in the Premier League in August and we'll all be dancing a merry jig in his honour...for about a minute.  

Funny how a six hour round trip to watch us get mauled by a team generally regarded as hopeless quickly beats the audacity of hope out of you!

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On ‎12‎/‎03‎/‎2018 at 4:35 PM, Frederick said:

Sorry about pinching Grabban, me old son. Coleman better go into the attic and find that voodoo doll that toppled Belgium a few summers ago because he's looking a hubristic goon for knowingly throwing himself into this inferno. 

 

Our fans seemed curiously apathetic towards Grabban when he was here, but he'll always weigh in with goals at this level. We certainly miss him, although the way we are at the back at the moment, we'd need to be scoring three or four every week just to be in with a chance of getting a draw.

 

As for Coleman, he probably thought he'd be able to walk in to the club, give the players a shake and coast into a mid table finish. If it was that simple, surely Grayson would have managed it.

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13 hours ago, Top-modèle196 said:

Manchester United parking the fuck out of the bus tonight. Awful starting lineup

 

If there's one thing I've learned from watching European tournament football over the last few years, it's to never underestimate Sevilla.

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Congratulations to vibrant young go getter Marky "the Sparky" Hughes for b(l)agging the Southampton job. May he continue his longstanding assault on insomnia before being replaced by Big Sam/Pulis/Pardew/Marco Silva/Roy/Moyes/Lambert/McLeish/Tim/Gary Megson/Claus Lundekvam/Paul Jewell/Felix Magath/the cameraman-father of the child Jamie Carragher spat on...Tony Adams.

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On 3/15/2018 at 12:49 PM, Frederick said:

Congratulations to vibrant young go getter Marky "the Sparky" Hughes for b(l)agging the Southampton job. May he continue his longstanding assault on insomnia before being replaced by Big Sam/Pulis/Pardew/Marco Silva/Roy/Moyes/Lambert/McLeish/Tim/Gary Megson/Claus Lundekvam/Paul Jewell/Felix Magath/the cameraman-father of the child Jamie Carragher spat on...Tony Adams.

 

The only collective selling point of Moyes, Lambert, Pardew and Hughes seems to be their experience. Never mind that they've all spent the majority of their managerial careers serving up eye-bleedingly awful football, they've been doing it a long time and that somehow makes them a better bet than making a vaguely imaginative appointment. And still somehow, they'll be the first ones on TV moaning about how these chances never come to British managers.

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Sincere congratulations to former Aston Villa player/manager/coach/Bruce Springsteen aficionado John Gregory for winning his first Indian Super League. Arguably his finest achievement since his stirring appearance as himself in Sky's action packed football soap Dream Team (we nearly signed Scott Lucas!) 

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End of an era for Arsenal. If anything, the way Wenger stuck at it during the lean times, ensuring stability for the club, was most laudable. Especially as the 'mediocrity' he was accused of overseeing by so many bewilderingly entitled fans, was actually a level of consistency that most clubs should and do envy.

 

Surely now though, the stage is set for Sam Allardyce to at last manage a big club. Hopefully he can attract some good players to help Arsenal compete. Youri, Ivan, Jay Jay, we're getting the band back together!

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I'd been prepared for this day for quite a while, so much so that by the time it eventually got around to becoming a reality, it was fairly painless. Ineptitude and an absence of fighting spirit is a deadly combination.

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On 4/20/2018 at 1:42 PM, Michael* said:

Surely now though, the stage is set for Sam Allardyce to at last manage a big club. Hopefully he can attract some good players to help Arsenal compete. Youri, Ivan, Jay Jay, we're getting the band back together!

Kevin Nolan would've been a fun addition to Arsenal back in the day in a Thomas Graveson to Real Madrid kind of way. Inherently wrong but might just work except it can't possibly. And yet...of course not (but let's do it anyway).

 

On 4/22/2018 at 9:33 AM, Michael* said:

I'd been prepared for this day for quite a while, so much so that by the time it eventually got around to becoming a reality, it was fairly painless. Ineptitude and an absence of fighting spirit is a deadly combination.

Commiserations, Michael. Hard to offer any nuggets of solace but if there's a way to keep Honeyman and Gooch then that would be a start. I suggest every Premier League owner with a team 7th or below study this catastrophe long and hard. It shouldn't happen to anyone and it shouldn't happen again but I strongly suspect it will.

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12 hours ago, Frederick said:

Commiserations, Michael. Hard to offer any nuggets of solace but if there's a way to keep Honeyman and Gooch then that would be a start. I suggest every Premier League owner with a team 7th or below study this catastrophe long and hard. It shouldn't happen to anyone and it shouldn't happen again but I strongly suspect it will.

 

Much obliged, Fred. It seems too simplistic to pin the blame entirely on Ellis Short who until recently was ploughing his own money into the club and still seems prepared to pay the bills until a buyer is found. He would have bought Sunderland with eyes on the riches of the Premier League, and I've few complaints with owners running football clubs as businesses and aiming to make a profit. Of course, where his stewardship has failed is that the culture of the club has stunk through a mixture of poor appointments, squandered cash and mercenary players.

 

To that end, I've been surprised that Lee Cattermole hasn't come in for more criticism. He was captain for relegations from the Premier League and the Championship, and throughout the "wrong'uns in the dressing room" period, which went on for so long that even the Secret Footballer wrote about it. Honestly, he'd be the first player that I'd like to see the back of, probably even more so than Rodwell.

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12 hours ago, Michael* said:

To that end, I've been surprised that Lee Cattermole hasn't come in for more criticism. He was captain for relegations from the Premier League and the Championship, and throughout the "wrong'uns in the dressing room" period, which went on for so long that even the Secret Footballer wrote about it. Honestly, he'd be the first player that I'd like to see the back of, probably even more so than Rodwell.

I'll wager successive managers have looked at Cattermole as a rough diamond who, theoretically, embodies worthy virtues such as liking a tackle and being local. "The fans at least know this one's a trier, now I'll be the one to turn him into something really worth a damn" they all say, clutching their straws and handing out a new contract, ignoring all empirical evidence, all while the player stacks up a decade of tidy salary as Rome burns. 

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12 hours ago, jkjk said:

@Michael*, League One champions next season?

 

At the moment, it's hard not to picture the countless battle hardened League One sides who'll no doubt be sharpening the knives for us, but let's hope so. Get promoted back into the Championship and we'll likely feel a lot better about ourselves than if we'd merely survived for a couple of seasons in an extremely competitive second tier.

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10 hours ago, Frederick said:

I'll wager successive managers have looked at Cattermole as a rough diamond who, theoretically, embodies worthy virtues such as liking a tackle and being local. "The fans at least know this one's a trier, now I'll be the one to turn him into something really worth a damn" they all say, clutching their straws and handing out a new contract, ignoring all empirical evidence, all while the player stacks up a decade of tidy salary as Rome burns. 

 

Of the many managers we've had, Di Canio's analysis of the problem was perhaps closest to being the correct one, and he seemed to zero in on Cattermole as one of the worst culprits. Looking back, I suppose you'd have to say Paolo had the right idea about a lot of things, it's just that you'd have to be a decent manager and be of sound mind to pull off what he was trying to do.

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10 hours ago, Michael* said:

At the moment, it's hard not to picture the countless battle hardened League One sides who'll no doubt be sharpening the knives for us, but let's hope so. Get promoted back into the Championship and we'll likely feel a lot better about ourselves than if we'd merely survived for a couple of seasons in an extremely competitive second tier.

 

I'll hope for the quick return to the Championship, but not the up and down like Wigan's recent run.  :smile:

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16 hours ago, jkjk said:

I'll hope for the quick return to the Championship, but not the up and down like Wigan's recent run.  :smile:

 

Who's your team then, @jkjk? :smile:

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^^  I'm very odd with teams. I don't know where this comes from but my mentality is similar to an impartial sports journalist.

 

I watch many different sports and don't really have a team in any of them. I want certain teams to win, but it wouldn't be fair or accurate to call myself a fan in the way others are fans.

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17 minutes ago, jkjk said:

^^  I'm very odd with teams. I don't know where this comes from but my mentality is similar to an impartial sports journalist.

 

I watch many different sports and don't really have a team in any of them. I want certain teams to win, but it wouldn't be fair or accurate to call myself a fan in the way others are fans.

 

Interesting. Will you picking someone to root for at the World Cup or just enjoying the spectacle?

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18 hours ago, Michael* said:

 

Of the many managers we've had, Di Canio's analysis of the problem was perhaps closest to being the correct one, and he seemed to zero in on Cattermole as one of the worst culprits. Looking back, I suppose you'd have to say Paolo had the right idea about a lot of things, it's just that you'd have to be a decent manager and be of sound mind to pull off what he was trying to do.

PdC could never be anything other than a short, beautiful and utterly mad fling for anyone but considering Sunderland have had their universe scorched, mauled and cannoned to Uranus anyway, you have to wonder what he might have cooked up with a tad more time.

The Cattermole case has shades of our Gabby. Houllier dared to tell him to stop hitting the weights and get back into being a speed demon which actually caused a minor cufuffle back in the day but he was bang on the money. All the enabler managers who peddled soft lies to him subsequently never got us anywhere and of course now he's the size of a beached whale and let me tell ya, it ain't the weights bulking him up these days.

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37 minutes ago, Michael* said:

Interesting. Will you picking someone to root for at the World Cup or just enjoying the spectacle?

 

In short, I will likely root for underdogs, good football, and some individuals (particularly Messi).

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