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What’s The Matter With … Sunderland?

| 23.09.2013

Bottom of the Premier League, winless and now without a manager, it’s safe to say things have not started well on Wearside.

After little more than six months in the role of Sunderland manager, Paolo Di Canio has been issued his P45 and subsequently the Black Cats are in disarray.

Fellow Italian Roberto Di Matteo is the early market leader at 10/11 to become the next permanent Sunderland manager.

A miserly return of just one point from their opening five games has left Sunderland propping up the table and priced at 5/1 to still be there when the final standings are published.

While there is still plenty of time for the Wearside club to turn their season around, there is no getting away from the fact this is a mightily humiliating mess and a tangle that cannot be easily unrivalled.

Worse still, as Sunderland fans begin to contemplate who will be next into one of the hottest of Premier League hot seats, this is a situation which should never have come about in the first place.

When the Sunderland chairman Ellis Short was searching for Martin O’Neill’s replacement back in March, it appears the American had not properly vetted the man he was bringing in to run his football team.

Di Canio already had a reputation as a firebrand character and it didn’t take long for accusations of fascism to surface either. Forget alarm bells, the klaxons should have been sounding off with this appointment.

Furthermore, the sum total of his managerial resume was gaining promotion from League Two with Swindon, a creditable achievement, but not one worthy of an immediate crack at Premier League management surely?

The icing on the rapidly melting cake is that Sunderland’s hierarchy in all their wisdom sanctioned the signing of 14 new players over a frenetic summer of transfer activity, only one of whom was British.

So, whoever is appointed to deal with the aftermath of yet another managerial sacking at Sunderland, will now be left with nearly an entire squad of players signed by the previous manager.

Meanwhile, the suffering for Sunderland fans continues.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.