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On 4/2/2020 at 1:47 PM, Frederick said:

Slowly sinking my teeth into Sunderland 'Til I Die 2.0, @Michael*. Charlie Methven is shaping up to be quite the character, sort of like David Brent, Richard Madeley and any Conservative Party cabinet minister rolled into one.

 

I reached the halfway point last night, planning on finishing up over the next couple of days. The emphasis seems to have shifted somewhat from the city and the fans to a "fly on the wall" style documentary primarily centred in the boardroom, with the series' trump card of course being our pursuit of Will Grigg last January. Not that the Donald and Methven show isn't grotesquely entertaining, it obviously is, I just can't help thinking that it's a little at odds with what we keep hearing about the club being "given back" to the fans. Perhaps needless to say though, it's still compulsive viewing.

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On 4/4/2020 at 3:17 PM, Michael* said:

 

I reached the halfway point last night, planning on finishing up over the next couple of days. The emphasis seems to have shifted somewhat from the city and the fans to a "fly on the wall" style documentary primarily centred in the boardroom, with the series' trump card of course being our pursuit of Will Grigg last January. Not that the Donald and Methven show isn't grotesquely entertaining, it obviously is, I just can't help thinking that it's a little at odds with what we keep hearing about the club being "given back" to the fans. Perhaps needless to say though, it's still compulsive viewing.

I'm halfway done now. The fans are definitely less of a presence this time around, which in some ways feels like a good move, as there are only some many slo-mo shots of irate/delirious fans any viewer of any persuasion needs. Also grateful that the "if we win on Saturday, it affects the whole city" stuff isn't being repeated twelve hundred times per episode, like in Season 1. The intro of episode 3 with the soldier guy seemed a case of "we shot it so we'll use it" but tonally it was jarring in an episode that was fairly light on its feet. That being said, I do miss some of the larger, wobblier elements. The players and coaches are reduced to essentially abstract concepts and one could be easily forgiven for thinking Sunderland won their first 25 games of the season given the show's fairly unbothered approach to showing the league table and such.

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On 4/6/2020 at 11:32 AM, Frederick said:

I'm halfway done now. The fans are definitely less of a presence this time around, which in some ways feels like a good move, as there are only some many slo-mo shots of irate/delirious fans any viewer of any persuasion needs. Also grateful that the "if we win on Saturday, it affects the whole city" stuff isn't being repeated twelve hundred times per episode, like in Season 1. The intro of episode 3 with the soldier guy seemed a case of "we shot it so we'll use it" but tonally it was jarring in an episode that was fairly light on its feet. That being said, I do miss some of the larger, wobblier elements. The players and coaches are reduced to essentially abstract concepts and one could be easily forgiven for thinking Sunderland won their first 25 games of the season given the show's fairly unbothered approach to showing the league table and such.

 

I finally got around to finishing up and I'm inclined to agree. Thinking back to the summer before last and the curiosity of Donald and Methven identifying Jack Ross as the right managerial candidate so soon after acquiring ownership of the club, it felt a little off to me that Ross remained such a distant figure throughout. The majority of Donald's subsequent decisions were probably reactions to circumstance and mood rather than anything resembling a plan, but it was still a bit frustrating that nothing was forthcoming about the rationale behind the appointment.

 

The players, aside from the early focus on Luke O'Nien's arrival and the hand wringing over Josh Maja's contract, seem similarly absent. From the fairly limited insight we're given into where their heads were at, Ross appears to be well liked, but ultimately I suppose you'd have to say he lacked the motivational skills to see us right for our final run of do-or-die games.

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I didn't look in many places but it seems like the Championship will return and League Two will not, but I didn't see anything about League One. Is League One expected to return to finish the season?

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15 minutes ago, jkjk said:

I didn't look in many places but it seems like the Championship will return and League Two will not, but I didn't see anything about League One. Is League One expected to return to finish the season?

 

From what I understand, there's been a rather bitter division between League One clubs over whether to resume.

 

The current expectation seems to be that they'll end up having to vote on a series of options, including whether to play on, deciding promotion and relegation on a statistical basis, potentially void relegations or, possibly, stage some kind of play-offs.

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I have a big enough sample size now to safely say the BT Sport Bundesliga commentator, hyper at the best of the times, needs to take it down several notches for games in our new reality. Set an example in your chosen field, you over eager dafty, by not smothering me with endless inane babbling or forcing Owen Hargreaves' dreary cadence upon my ears when he clearly wants to be left alone, let me bathe in the echoes and silence from time to time, let me hear the benches and the on pitch shouting and see if my knowledge of German swear words is improving. Thank you.    

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Not that there are any good options for a restart, only a choice of least bad I suppose, but when faced with financial catastrophe unless the league continues, resuming with empty stadia and safety measures in place does seem like the best option available.

 

I don't think it's just the absence of crowds that's important though, it's the disturbance of the narrative and the lack of hype and noise surrounding the game that will make things completely different. Let it be sterile and strange if it has to be, the greater the attempts at manufacturing some sort of artificial normality, the weirder things will undoubtedly get.

 

Perhaps needless to say, one wonders why Hargreaves even bothers. He doesn't appear to get any particular enjoyment out of it and goodness knows he's not bringing much to the table. 

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Played reasonably well against a decent team who arguably humiliated us in the reverse fixture, such was the gulf in ability. But golly gee, I don't think I have the stomach for all these games, ours or anyone else's.

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13 minutes ago, Frederick said:

Played reasonably well against a decent team who arguably humiliated us in the reverse fixture, such was the gulf in ability. But golly gee, I don't think I have the stomach for all these games, ours or anyone else's.

 

If we must have games played in empty stadiums, at least give it a bit of authenticity by allowing one old bloke to stand by the touchline with his dog.

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Christian Purslow has the gift of the gab to the extent that he could probably convince me that my legs are in fact made of candle wax, but we are so thunderously pants as a footballing entity it begs belief. Bruce may as well have laid out a red carpet and said "we can't be bothered today, go beat us" but no, we started playing with five minutes to go, but not before being out thought by a mutton chopped 76 year-old Andy Carroll. League games against Coventry beckon and I tell ya, I ain't ready for it!

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I hope Wigan's situation is unique and not one of many.

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On 7/4/2020 at 1:44 AM, jkjk said:

I hope Wigan's situation is unique and not one of many.

 

Even without the gambling allegations, the current predicament at Wigan is one of the biggest scandals in British footballing history. If in fact there is an EFL "fit and proper persons test" it probably resembles a two by two sudoku puzzle with half the squares already filled in.

 

I fear we may be along to join them before too long, though. The recent announcement regarding the club not paying furlough top-up money was the clearest message yet that we're absolutely flipping brassic.

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6 minutes ago, Michael* said:

Even without the gambling allegations, the current predicament at Wigan is one of the biggest scandals in British footballing history. If in fact there is an EFL "fit and proper persons test" it probably resembles a two by two sudoku puzzle with half the squares already filled in.

 

I fear we may be along to join them before too long, though. The recent announcement regarding the club not paying furlough top-up money was the clearest message yet that we're absolutely flipping brassic.

 

I was thinking many clubs could be in trouble because of the virus and the reduction in income that came with it. I would think most clubs spend much of their income for competitive reasons and were not prepared for any disruptions.

 

It seems like the Wigan's punishment should be more than the normal 12 points. I'm sure the process will take a very long time since there is more going on than just money problems/bankruptcy.

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21 hours ago, jkjk said:

I was thinking many clubs could be in trouble because of the virus and the reduction in income that came with it. I would think most clubs spend much of their income for competitive reasons and were not prepared for any disruptions.

 

It seems like the Wigan's punishment should be more than the normal 12 points. I'm sure the process will take a very long time since there is more going on than just money problems/bankruptcy.

 

I would think so. The biggest concern of the EFL will probably be less about their duty of care, more the fact that it'll be near impossible to have a sensible league competition if half the clubs in the lower divisions have to start a new season on minus twelve points, but I'd imagine they'll exercise caution as a result. At least for the time being.

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Champions League draw and what have you.

 

 

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August will be an interesting month, to be sure.

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Big friggin surprise that Man City's 2 year UCL ban was overturned. UEFA lacks consistency and only punishes the smaller clubs while the bigger ones get a slap on the wrist. I guess it depends on how much cash you have for bribes.

 

UEFA is just as corrupt as FIFA.

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While the European ban for Man City has been overturned of course, they do remain under investigation by the Premier League. £500 fine incoming.

 

Who am I kidding, the Premier League would probably settle for a packet of crisps and a can of Fanta.

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On 7/6/2020 at 9:52 PM, Michael* said:

 

I would think so. The biggest concern of the EFL will probably be less about their duty of care, more the fact that it'll be near impossible to have a sensible league competition if half the clubs in the lower divisions have to start a new season on minus twelve points, but I'd imagine they'll exercise caution as a result. At least for the time being.

Presumably Wigan are the first club to go into administration and win a game 8-0 less than two weeks later.

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A banner at every empty stadium demanding the reinstatement of Clive Tydesley as ITV's number one commentator? Seems the least 'we' can do. Matterface? More like Getouttamyface!

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