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The Devil’s Advocate: stop squealing, stick together. And Eric Roy agrees

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Rob Hutchison keeps it short and, well, you can judge the sweetness … and our much-admired former midfielder Eric Roy tells us to be patient with the new or newish players … ‘Tis the season of peace and goodwill to all men, the season to be jolly, full of glad tidings and merriment. Not in […]

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Devil’s Advocate: Ndong in Gabon and a few home truths

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Malcolm Dawson writes…….Rob Hutchison is a man of few words when sending us his post match ratings but every now and then he expands his thinking and tackles the issues that we might bounce about in the pub over a few bevvies. Today in the latest of his offerings where he plays devil’s advocate, he […]

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Devil’s Advocate: stand by our man Moyes despite the Stoke nightmare

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Monsieur Salut writes: Genius in adversity or just Pete Sixsmith in tip-top form yet again? Read his terrific report from the Stoke City game and make up your own mind. And here’s another excellent piece, this time from Rob Hutchison, who argues passionately against yet more upheaval … (more…)

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The Devil’s Advocate on PvA and mixed fortunes at Spurs and QPR

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Malcolm Dawson writes……man of few words Rob Hutchison (he of the one word player ratings) is becoming more garrulous these days with his regular take on events happening in and around the club that is Sunderland AFC. Here he reflects on the events of the past few days, although he’d hit the save key on […]

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The Devil’s Advocate: from Rochdale to Everton, from Kone to keepers

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John McCormick asks: what do you think of the reformatted former Johnstone’s Paint trophy? Did we really need to fork out for a two year contract for a third keeper? Will Victor Anichebe prove to be better than Danny Graham? My answers are “undecided”, “no”, “yes but that means nothing”. Rob Hutchison has his own opinions. Here […]

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The Devil’s Advocate: ‘I’ve seen the Mackem future and it’s bright.’ And bravo SAFC Ladies

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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 … (more…)

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The Devil’s Advocate: a SAFC fan prepared to say ‘about time too’

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Rob Hutchison, master of the occasional one-word, one-mark matchday ratings, returns to devil advocacy, with some strident and, doubtless for some, controversial thoughts on our plodding progress in the transfer window … Hola kiddies . . . .another week in the life of Sunderland’s little devil. Middlesborough. Was it a derby? Of course it was. They’re […]

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The Devil’s Advocate: the unbridled joy that lies ahead for Sunderland fans

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Rob Hutchison – find him at Twitter on – is best known around here for his one-word ratings, always welcome and always arriving just as Monsieur Salut is about to go out, obliging little white lies to Mme Salut to cover the delay. He now launches an occasional new column, the idea for which […]

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Wolves, Cardiff, Bristol, Derby and Sheffield United join Middlesbrough, Villa and Fulham as our ones to watch

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Let’s go back to the start of the season (and don’t we wish we could). I polled our readers as […]

Sunderland: a tragic tale of lost love, disconnect and rebuilding from scratch

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Monsieur Salut is left at a loose end, feeling a little redundant with no need to post a Guess the […]

Sixer’s Soapbox: Preston comfortable as Sunderland freezes

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John McCormick writes: I won’t be going to the North East before June, so I won’t be seeing any home […]

Sixer’s Sevens: Preston benefit from this week’s press of the self-destruct button

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John McCormick writes: The darkness began to descend early in the second half at the Stadium of Light, and that […]

The First Time Ever I Saw Your Team: Preston North End and a trip back in time

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John McCormick writes: Tuesday morning, and I’m idly contemplating the weekend and Pete Sixsmith’s “first time” feature which will announce […]

PNE Who are You?: ‘stick with it Mackems; you’re a big club with loud, passionate fans’

Jake says: 'click the Who are You? banner to see the series so far this season'

Monsieur Salut writes: thinking Kevin Kilbane had a bit of a raw deal from SAFC fans isn’t the same as […]