Opinions are like, well, anything we all have. Mine is no more valuable than the next Sunderland supporter’s.

The transfer window perked up a little towards the end with Fabio Borini’s broadly welcomed return and the loan addition of a full back from Spurs, the USA international DeAndre Yedlin.

Most of us would have liked more in and a few out. But it is possible to take that view and still feel that between them, Dick Advocaat, Lee Congerton and Ellis Short managed to strengthen the squad, performing the tricky task of attracting players to a constantly struggling club in the far north.

My own rating out of 10, for ESPN FC, was four when I initially submitted my report at the weekend, just after the Villa match. I upped it to 5/10 on the strength of Borini’s signing alone, but went no higher for Yedlin. Time will tell on both, and the six other new faces, though Jeremain Lens and Yann M’Vila have already shown signs of being highly useful Sunderland players.

Chris Young in the Sunderland Echo was more upbeat, concluding after an often frustrating series of on-off wheeling and dealing that good business had been done.


Salut! Sunderland
‘s deputy editor Malcolm Dawson is right to call on SAFC’s faithful to recognise that Dick must now work with what he has and deserves the full support of the fans in doing so.

But do have a go at the poll. If you think Chris was too complimentary, or that I should have been more understanding and appreciative, say so in the Comments as well as casting your votes.

M Salut, drawn by Matt, colouring by Jake

M Salut, drawn by Matt, colouring by Jake

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Salut! Sunderland is written, illustrated and edited by - and principally for - supporters of Sunderland AFC. The site aims to be sufficiently literate and entertaining to appeal to people who do not follow SAFC but enjoy good football writing.

22 Responses to “Your chance to rate Sunderland’s transfer dealings” Subscribe

  1. Keir September 2, 2015 at 10:46 am #

    7.5/10 for me. M’Vila, Lens, Borini and Toivonen all quality signings, Kaboul potentially in that category as well. Matthews and Coates are squad fillers although an improvement on the level of squad players we’ve had before. We’ll have to wait and see on Yedlin but I think he’s a very exciting prospect.
    Marks down for the lack of reinforcement at left back and also the lack of clearing the deadwood, although it’s hardly a disaster and we’ve still got the football league loan period to go. Quietly impressed with the business we’ve done.

  2. Dizzy2142 September 2, 2015 at 11:19 am #

    I gave a 7/10.

    Although Yedlin is an exciting prospect, we really needed a steady hand at left back and we have failed to get that. I have heard there are question marks about Yedlin’s positioning, which means we have 3 right backs all with defensive question marks over them.

    I would have liked to see Jose Enrique come in, initially on a loan.

    Although I am pleased to see Borini come in, I was slightly surprised. It will be interesting to see where he fits with Defoe. I would have thought a decent target man would be more appropriate but I suppose there was no one available.

    M’Vila is quality and after watching Toivenen at Villa – I think he is going to be very popular with the fans.

  3. smoggie September 2, 2015 at 11:48 am #

    Billy Jones gets himself out of position all the time so maybe him and Yedlin can swap places lol

  4. John Murch September 2, 2015 at 12:11 pm #

    Only a 5….. Sorry but nowhere near enough to keep us safe. I can’t think of 3 worse squads overall than us. Breakdown as follows. Keepers 6. 2 better than average keepers although Pants has been both good and bad this season..Defence..4. Shocking across the board. Can’t get my head round Coates (what, 5 good games last season?) and Kaput (26 games in THREE SEASONS) tagged with fullbacks walkabout and too slow. Shows how bad we are when we recall O shea..Why not try Rodders?? Pace, skill, speed….could be the making of him.. Midfield 7 on a good day. Expect big things of MVila and Lens. Getting Catts head back on is paramount and with Larsson as back up will be fine Still wish we had gotten De Guzman. Forwards? 7…Defoe could not do it alone and I’m gonna get pezzlers for this but…….Borini? Hmmmm. Wish Danny could just get a lucky break. He has the running and hold up skills to compliment Defoe. Toivonen looks canny but where will he fit in now?? Collectively we could get 1or 2 goals a game but… that gives us a draw at best with the defence…..Looking a long long season. Oh n before I get slated….The I have a season ticket, actually go to games.. tin hat on.

    • Jake September 2, 2015 at 2:39 pm #

      Agree with giving Rodwell a go at the back. So far we’ve tried Kaboul&Coates, O’Shea&Coates, and O’Shea&Kaboul, every combo has looked shaky. He often drifts invisibly through games in midfield so worth a try with him in the position he played in as a kid.

      • Keir September 2, 2015 at 4:43 pm #

        Both O’Shea and Coates, and O’Shea and Kaboul has looked like a solid centre-back partnership. Giving Rodwell a game at left back would be absolute madness.

        • Jake September 2, 2015 at 4:48 pm #

          Rodwell was a centre back originally Keir, I agree putting him at left back would be madness. I disagree that the other pairings have looked solid though.

          • Keir September 2, 2015 at 5:01 pm #

            Was he? certainly doesn’t look like he could be one now. I thought we looked reasonably good at Villa and Swansea in centre defence though

    • Keir September 2, 2015 at 4:53 pm #

      1. worse squads: Norwich, Bournemouth, Villa, Leicester, Palace, West Brom, Watford. Not saying they’re worse teams or that we’ll finish above all of them, but our squad, on paper, is actually rather strong in comparison to the above. Where we fall apart is on the pitch itself. The quality players are there.
      2. Pants and Mannone have both proven time and and time again to be excellent keepers and great-value purchases (which is precisely why I don’t buy this ‘blinkered’ ‘Sunderland always waste money on rubbish’ agenda that is so commonly portrayed by fans.
      3. Coates is a squad player and looked good under Advocaat, completely understandable why he was signed imo.
      4. Kaboul is an iffy purchase and clears the ball upfield far too often for me, it awaits to be seen how he’ll do over the season. Definitely got an error or two in him.
      5. van Aanholt and Yedlin are hardly too slow! 🙂
      6. Recalling O’Shea, our captain and on pitch leader is not a sign of ‘how bad we are’.
      7. Pace, skill and speed are not exactly priorities for a centre back. Rodwell gets pushed off the ball too much as it is.
      8. Fair enough on midfield, definitely our strongest area. Rodwell – M’Vila – Toivonen has the makings of a quality midfield three.
      9. Borini can either lead the line with Lens and Johnson as support (making that one of the strongest attacks in years!) or play out wide in Johnson’s place with Defoe through the middle. Nice to have options.
      10. Perhaps the most important point here: previously we’ve been looking at relegation fights purely because we couldn’t put the ball in the back of the net. The main positive to take from the start to the season is that we are no longer struggling on that front – and I think that alone will see us comfortably safe by the end of the season.

      • Keir September 2, 2015 at 4:54 pm #

        also, Graham shouldn’t be anywhere near the first 11 for me (Clive)

      • John Murch September 2, 2015 at 7:11 pm #

        1. 2 of those “worse squads” have beaten us hands down, while another has beaten Chelsea on their own patch, been unlucky against Arsenal and beaten two of the other “worse squads” The others are untested as yet.
        2. Can’t complain, as I said bout keepers, but Pants has been erratic this season.
        3.Coates is a squad player who rarely looks good, and has been poor this season, on the back of an average season last.
        4.Kaput played 26 times in 3 seasons, 146 in 10. That alone inspires confidence..Not.
        5. Didnt call Aanholt slow, called him walkabout. Convince me his positioning is good? No?
        6.We bought 2 defenders to replace O Shea who was caught out badly at the end of the season at times.
        7.I would have thought pace skill and speed would have been some of the better qualities for a centre half, amounts other’s.
        8. No change.
        9.Borini is remembered for several things. Goals against Newcastle and ‘man city . In a poor side he did ok, but still divides opinions, including mine. Juries out till May.
        10 Agree with the lack of goals, but we’ve turned that argument 180 degrees. With this defence scoring 1or 2 goals against teams will not even guarantee a point, let alone a win. Your “worse squads” after 3 games stands at “for” 5 – “against” – 9. Points 1 versus 7 ….. Comfortable??

        • Keir September 2, 2015 at 7:23 pm #

          1. Just because a team beats another team doesn’t mean their squad is better, it just means they won on the day and perhaps were tactically superior – the squad is definitely a factor but games aren’t played on paper
          3. I thought Coates was much improved under Advocaat, he’s definitely split opinion though. Was impressed with him v Swansea.
          4. Kaboul was behind the likes of Vertonghen at Spurs – hardly an embarrassment
          5. van Aanholt’s positioning is woeful, I’ll give you that
          6. At which point we realised we needed his leadership. If anything, last window we should’ve signed a leader who by this season could take over the captiancy.
          7. a good centre half needs to be strong and good at tackling – neither of which Rodwell has particularly excelled at during his time here.
          10. I think if we need too, we can shut out teams. See Arsenal away, mags at home. Being unable to score cost us 2 points in so many games last season – losing a match will only cost us 1. Twisted logic, really, but that’s how I think about that. It looks like we’ve fixed our age old problem of not being able to score and that should be a really good thing

          • John Murch September 2, 2015 at 7:39 pm #

            1. Agree with win/squad comment as its a no brainer. That or we’ve been fooling the world with our results against Man City in the last few years. But having a good squad helps.
            4. 146 games in 10 years…..who was Kabul behind all that time?
            Ahh well. Let’s agree to let’s see. Good conversations Me it, let’s hope

  5. Terry September 2, 2015 at 12:50 pm #

    When you look at Evans for 6m, Sako free, Glen Johnson free, Walters (available for) 1.5m, Dyer on loan, then no, I don’t think this has been any different to the usual blinkered, wasteful window. We could have had these and about 13m still to spend….

  6. malcolm September 2, 2015 at 12:58 pm #

    I’ve gone for 6. M’Vila and Lens are beginning to show they can play. We have seen what Borini can do but he’ll need time to get up to speed. Toivonen had a decent debut but then so did Cabral and N’Diaye. I’ll hang fire on him and Yedlin. Though he hasn’t managed to make the Spurs starting line up neither had Danny Rose much when we took him on loan and look at how well he did. Kaboul and Coates both look as if they’ll need O’Shea alongside them but hopefully after a few games with him they’ll start to gel. Matthews hasn’t convinced me yet that he is an improvement on Billy Jones.

    I would have been happier if we hadn’t sent Vergini out on loan – people seem to have forgotten we signed him – as he could fill in at full back if that continues to be an area of concern. We do need to somehow get Bridcutt, Mavrias, Buckley and Roberge off the wage bill if they are not to going to feature under Dick and we are still waiting to hear about Alvarez. He might still end up being our 10th signing!

    With Gomez, Gooch, Watmore and Johnson all pushing for places I feel we now have a decent squad. It’s now up to the coaching staff to use that squad wisely.

    Also with Dick’s reassurances that he will see out his contract I get the feeling things are more settled. I think we’ll be OK if the defence gets organised.

  7. Keith Hutton Africa September 2, 2015 at 5:27 pm #

    Pants

    Yedlin Rodwell Kaboul van Aanholt

    Lens M’vila Toivonen Johnson

    Defoe Borini

    Subs Larsson, O’Shea, Cattermole, Coates, Jones Fletcher, Watmore

    Not a bad team and I think an improvement on last season

  8. Geoff Bethell September 2, 2015 at 5:59 pm #

    What excites me the most about our recent signings is that we now have goal potential from all over the park. Wearing (as usual) my devil’s advocate black hat tells me that one and usually more of our signings turn out to be real busts. This is especially true of recent history. Overall therefore – cautious optimism, feet on the ground, don’t expect the moon.

  9. Geoff Bethell September 2, 2015 at 8:40 pm #

    Just like to make another point. There have been a few who wonder if Fabio Borini will be as good as he was during that loan spell. My take on him is that he is a better player than Liverpool rate him. I also think his best position is “wide midfield” / “wing back” / “Winger” – whatever they are called these days. His presence in that role could fix a number of obvious left-sided problems. He will give it his all because I think his career is still very much on the up.

  10. Drummer September 3, 2015 at 9:43 am #

    I’ve gone for a 6 ,but left back aside I’ve probably been a bit stingy . Anyway what do we know ? The official mouthpiece of the skunks , the daily Mirror reckons we’ve done the worst buisness out of everyone . Along with their daily digs at us in print and on twitter , you might think they even had an agenda ! Perish the thought , but its a boycoutt from me from now on for that chip wrapper .

  11. Keir September 3, 2015 at 11:42 am #

    Here’s the squad for the rest of the season, or at least until January. Looking pretty strong, I think. http://lineupbuilder.com/?sk=8lx6d

  12. William C September 3, 2015 at 3:32 pm #

    5 only from me, due to poor defensive cover, and failure to sign a proper centre forward.

    We look okay in midfield [ possibly too much choice ] but defence looks so vulnerable, and still no-one who offers a decent out ball.

    Hope this is addressed in January?

  13. Geoff Mangan September 3, 2015 at 4:50 pm #

    A glass half full ‘8’ from me because the likes of Lens, Ola and M’Vila have made an quick impact. Borini is the icing on the cake and he will make a significant difference to our alleged attack. Disappointing re the centre half position and that we didn’t land Jonny Evans.

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Promotion poll: Sunderland vie with Portsmouth but can Burton, Lincoln or Doncaster make top six?

Plenty of this from the Roker End last night.

John McCormick, associate editor, writes: things have quietened down with our ‘who to follow’ poll, as we might expect. Portsmouth, […]

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