Sunderland Win, Lose or Draw* at Ipswich

12/5 for a home win looks a big price? Further research shows that of the last 6 home games, they have lost 5, the solitary win was against an absolutely hapless Burton team, who are fast becoming the whipping boys of this league. Whilst we are doing ok, we’re not playing particularly well, I’m firmly behind Lee Johnson, (as we should be whoever manages us), but fucking hell this is a big job. We’re no better than we were under Parkinson – that’s not really a criticism of either manager, more of an observation that we need to give someone time to get it right, it’s rightly a game of opinions, but I remain firmly of the opinion that the trigger was pulled too soon on Parkinson. Chelsea sacked Lampard today, regardless of whether this was fair, at least they have a plan in that they are going in a different direction with a different type of manager and they clearly knew where they wanted to go before sacking Lampard. We just seem to, replace managers with other managers, it may be that LJ is backed in the Transfer Window, but as it stands, the change doesn’t look like much of a change this far? I’m fully behind LJ, but fucking hell, imagine the meltdown on Saturday if that game had been under Parkinson? There’s a lot of questions that could be asked of us this year, whilst I appreciate the buck stops with the manager, the lads on the pitch haven’t really performed with any consistency, whether this is due to underperforming or Lack of quality, is another discussion.

Ipswich gaffer Paul Lambert has been round the block, he had a great playing career and I’m pretty sure he was in charge of Villa when they humped us 6-1 under DiCanio? He’s got the look of a man who had trials, but now spends his time in Wetherspoons telling people about it, I don’t know any Ipswich fans to ask, but he seems to have been at the helm for quite a while, I’m guessing they need to go up this year for him to remain in tenure?

Paul Lambert – he’s no Jack Ross?

One of the good things about going to footie is the memories, my phone keeps flagging up photos from this day 1 year ago today, 2 years ago today etc….. turns out 7 years ago yesterday we beat Kidderminster Harriers 1-0 in the cup. Pretty unglamorous for a Premier League Giant in its 8th consecutive season in the elite division, imagine playing jobbers like these every week? A year ago tonight, (not to the day, but the corresponding Matchday), we were at Tranmere.

Tranmere in January 2020 was not at the time a vintage trip, I like the company of the idiots I go with, I like the feel of a football match, I like writing about it, I just like live football….. it’s almost a year now. Whilst a freezing night in Tranmere should feel like light years ago, bizarrely it feels like yesterday, purely because although it’s a year ago, it’s recent in my footie memory bank. Ordinarily I’d have forgotten about it, but the fact I’ve been to 5 or 6 games since rather than 50 or 60 makes it a really vivid memory.

Taxi to Wetherby, Get Costa Coffee for the lads, get picked up, 3 hour trip to Tranmere, freezing night, shit game,3 points…… it doesn’t sound like the stuff dreams are made of – but at the moment it 100% is!

“Go West, life is peaceful there, Go West”
Prenton Park – the way we used to live?

“See them walking hand in hand, Across the bridge at midnight…… Girls On Film”

Most relationships are built on sharing tasks, in my abode I do bins and recycling, but I don’t empty the dishwasher. The longer we go without being allowed to go to match, the more I miss it, realistically it’s the random shite I miss the most? In the days when we were allowed to go to football, like most folk I travelled with the same people each week, either by car or train. As aforementioned any strong relationship requires roles, we share driving duties, I do pies and crisps, whereas someone else does coffee and Ales, these things don’t just happen? I don’t do photos, I’m either driving or pissed, neither of which are conducive to high level photography? But….. occasionally you just capture the odd good shot, as was the case this Matchday last year…..

Tranmere Away…. 9pm Munter AFC 0 vs 9.15pm Better FC 1, (Goggles, B).

Armchair Albion 1 vs Live Football Rovers 0, (Field, C, 22)

I’ve watched more footie on TV over the last 10 months than ever before, in a normal world I get to 2 or 3 live games a week, which means aside from skipping through Match of the Day, on a Sunday morning, I don’t really bother with footie on TV. In the current climate I’m watching absolutely shit loads, before we play tonight, Newcastle vs Leeds is on the box, (I like to think of it as warm up/support act that precedes the main event?). Strange one for me this, but for the first time I can remember I want Leeds to win, it really is a choice of 2 evils…. you’re stuck in a box do you want oxygen or food? …..shall we cut off your right or left testicle? …..would you rather go swimming at Barrymores or have Prince Andrew babysit?…. etc etc….

Onto the match….

I fancy us to win tonight, but I was pretty sure we’d win last Tuesday, it’s been said often but there really doesn’t seem to be any pattern in this league, Crewe were desperate at the SOL and they’re level on points with us. Ipswich are on a stinking run, you’d have to fancy us to beat Gillingham on Saturday, a win tonight would be massive in terms of momentum. Whilst home and away advantage/disadvantage is less relevant without fans, we are the only team across the 4 leagues not to have lost away, with this in mind I’m confident of 3 points tonight, I’m split between winning 1-0 or 2-0, but I don’t suppose it really matters?

Pre Teamsheet Teamsheet Thoughts

We weren’t particularly good on Saturday, although I don’t envisage many changes to the starting 11 tonight. If O’Nien is match fit I reckon he’ll feature, I suspect one more outing on the bench is more likely though. Willis and Wright when fit are a no brainier at CB, the full back positions worry me greatly, until Hume is fit McFadzean will play but he’s better going forward than defending, (not ideal for a full back). Power has been OK at RB, I just don’t understand why we play a midfielder there when Sanderson is on the bench, it seems more a case of finding somewhere for Power to play, rather than selecting Power in his best position? Scowen was loads better on Saturday, Diamond was poor – Embleton or Winchester for Diamond maybe?


Power Wright Willis McFadzean

Embleton, Scowen, Leadbitter, McGeady

O’Brien Wyke

Actual Teamsheet Teamsheet Thoughts

Pretty much as expected

7.45pm – Game On……

Excitement is at absolute Fever Pitch in North Yorkshire……

Politics not my bag, both teams do the taking to the knee, we only do this in our league when we are on SKY, I’ve no issue whether they kneel, stand on one leg or scratch their nads, but if players are going to make a political statement, surely it shouldn’t depend on the media output surrounding the game?

On proper TV with more than 1 camera – win tonight no bother

9 minutes…… absolute shocker of a challenge from their number 9. Red Card all day long, I was convinced we’d beat 11 of them so surely we’ll beat 10 men. Fair play to the ref, I’m the first to be critical of them – right decision and showed some bottle to show a straight red so early in the game, credit where credit is due.

20 minutes…….it’s absolutely pissing it down, pitch shite on the side nearest the camera…. Accrington December 2018 anyone??? Just a thought……

46 minutes…… decent ball in, decent finish from Wyke⚽️

Strikers = Confidence = Goals

Half time ……. 1-0, it’s not been pretty, we’re given the ball away lots, but let’s just win and move on, Job 50% done ✅ Great to see Lee Johnson has ditched the Club Issue Coat, it’s all coming together nicely.

2nd half……

53 minutes….. totally in control of the game, win this with ease I’d reckon? It’s stopped raining too, so no danger of the game being in any doubt.

62 minutes…… Bailey Wright takes a whack, thankfully he’s ok. It’s 10 months since I was at a game, is it the new normal for a golf buggy to come onto the pitch??

What the fuck is going on?

77 minutes…… they are shite but will probably get a chance before the end, let’s just get this done and get the fuck out of Suffolk.

Now we’re talking Lee, much better apparel tonight.

86 minutes……. not a vintage performance, it doesn’t need to be in this league, just get over the line. Not going to bother with post match interviews and analysis etc, as Anna Friel starring in a drama on ITV and there’s talk of her getting her norks out tonight.

90 minutes….. 6 added minutes after the Ipswich Golf Club Pro came to Baileys rescue, matters not, 1-0 is fine, more chance of it being 2 or 3-0 than 1-1. If we can beat Gillingham on Saturday, it becomes a decent run. Onwards and upwards⚽️

Final whistle… Clean sheet✅ A win✅ 3 points✅. We go again Saturday. All roads lead to Channel 103…..

SAFCBlog Branch Ambassador and Patron

Light nights definitely coming in now – onwards and fucking upwards – only a matter of time til life is back to normal – FTM

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