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Can Sunderland avoid relegation? Seven-in-a-row would make a Yes more likely

Parts of Salut! Sunderland are a bag of nerves as the Tyne-Wear derby approaches. Six-in-a-row will count for nothing if Newcastle United end the run; even a draw may end up being insufficient depending on the result in WBA-Norwich on Saturday and, more important still, the outcome of Norwich’s forthcoming home games against both us […]

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Tales from the Red and Whites: Monty, Benno, Lord Rowell and Sixer

Lane Hardy: 'hopefully the first of many ...'

  CONDOLENCES to the French midfielder Lassana Diarra on the loss of a cousin, a Muslim like him, in Friday’s attacks by the odious ISIL in Paris. See footnote … There is not enough time just yet – for reasons I outline in a long footnote touching on the sadness of recent days – to […]

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Gus sends us all a letter, and there hasn’t been a game.

John McCormick

John McCormick writes: There have been quite a few posts forecasting doom on this site recently, and some quite critical comments relating to our manager. It’s not just his team selection, strategy and tactics which have been questioned but also his communication, with the press, the fans, maybe the players. In particular, his post match […]

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Wes Brown and the limited benefits of a post-execution free pardon

what did he say?'

You’ve just been hanged for a crime you didn’t commit. “Don’t despair,” someone shouted, the last sound you would ever hear, as the trapdoor opened. “There’s an appeal in.” So Wes Brown’s name is cleared. The trapdoor opened long ago; the corpse of Sunderland’s defeat at Stoke has already been moved to the plot reserved […]

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Stoke’s Friend may be no one else’s for a while

Jake: more coaching than playing at Blackburn

Not sure if Mike Riley has yet made his call to Gus Poyet with abject apologies for a howler that has made Sunderland’s desperate battle against relegation all the harder. Nor is it clear whether Kevin Friend has been man enough to send Poyet his own mea culpa. But the signs are growing that Friend’s […]

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If the FA has the least sense, Brown plays at Villa. IF!

Jake: 'this is the place where you find true support, unconditional commitment'

All Sunderland supporters, and all followers of football with a shred of common sense and fairness, will hope – and pray, if they pray – the club succeed in the appeal against Wes Brown’s staggering unjust dismissal at Stoke City. (more…)

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SAFC supporters: not-so-great expectations vs ‘Messi would be rubbish here’

By Jake

A fascinating debate has developed at the Blackcats e-mail forum about Sunderland fans, their expectations and their demeanour. Some readers are also in that loop and will have seen the thread. For others, I present – with their consent – the exchanges of two leading participants, NZ-based Geoff Bethell and, from much closer to home […]

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Peruzzi, Colback and other transfer sagas

Jake: 'why not, with so many players with SAFC connections in Russia?'

  There has been a lot of transfer activity to reflect on already this summer, writes Stephen Goldsmith. We all expected a total overhaul, to be fair, and the appointments of Roberto De Fanti and Valentino Angeloni certainly suggested that we’d be generally looking abroad for our new a acquisitions. One potential signing in particular […]

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Salut Reflections: Westwood, Mignolet and Bramble make for interesting week in Sunderland.

Jake: 'why not, with so many players with SAFC connections in Russia?'

  During Martin O’Neill’s final months as SAFC manager, it became increasingly hard to gather and comment on news for a Reflections piece for Salut! Sunderland, writes Stephen Goldsmith. It seems unlikely Di Canio’s reign will be similar. The end of season is generally a bit of a lull for bloggers and writers, who try […]

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Salut Reflections: envying Man City and Swansea as Sunderland settle for passion

Jake: 'why not, with so many players with SAFC connections in Russia?'

I read with some amusement all the patronising tweets that flew in the direction of the Bradford fans and players in the aftermath of the mauling they received from Swansea in the Capital whatsitsname Cup final on Sunday, says Stephen Goldsmith. I didn’t feel sorry for them, they earned their place there and deserved to […]

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For Sunderland, the only way is up – starting with Charlton Athletic

Jake's back - and so are  Charlton

Monsieur Salut writes: in just over two weeks, only Sunderland’s second season as far down as the third tier kicks […]

Wahbi Khazri: forget Saint-Etienne – you could have played at Grimsby tonight

Sunderland the Play in real life: wowing Parisian theatregoers**

As Sunderland rceord a first pre-season win, 1-0 at Grimsby, we also say farewell – or another one since he’s […]

Sixer’s Hartlepool Soapbox: bravo Benji, bravo (later) France, bad show Byrne’s boys

Margaret Byrne

Not so cool at the Pool, said Peter Sixsmith. Benji Kimpioka was cool, as were others of the young players […]

Sixer’s Sevens: Kimpioka spares the blushes to maintain a superb pre-season (for him)

Sixer's Sevens (featured image)

The 2018-19 edition of Sixer’s Sevens, in which Pete Sixsmith or a super-sub sums up each Sunderland game in seven […]