Wise Men Rant – Your Say On SAFC

Next up, we have a bit of blind optimism from Leigh Ingle, who finds some positives in the potential for future growth (if we get things right this summer – big IF). He has got a point though, we have had it far worse…



Given that we have lost our 5th manager is as many years, the cycle of instability at Sunderland continues.  Following the usual passionate discussions about how bad we are run as a club, I’ve taken a moment to think about whether we actually have had it so bad.  The immediate conclusion is, of course we have…



I know it won’t change the emotion of how people feel now, and rightly so, we are in a mess and there do appear to be fundamental problems at the club, but, rewind back to the 2005-06, the 15 point season….We were relegated with one home win, witnessed by 28 thousand fans, had a shocking squad of players with no real goal scorer, an owner that had lost interest, no permanent manager, had been beaten 4-1 at home by them from up the road and were seemingly on the brink of collapse before Sir Niall and his consortium came in.  I had witnessed the Crosby, Butcher and Buxton era so had seem some bad times, but that summer was as low as I had felt in a while, looking back, I genuinely thought the club were heading for very dark times and years in the 2nd tier wilderness before we were ‘saved’.



Fast forward to now, yes, the football has been awful, there is a distinct separation between the fans and the players and given I couldn’t see us winning another game, we were headed for the drop before the change was correctly made, in my opinion.  However, this time feels a lot different.  The fans are sticking by the team, over 40,000 for every home match this season, we are not in the relegation zone, by one point I know, but, we have made an appointment immediately with a view to staying up, (whether it is the correct one will remain to be seen) and we have games remaining that we genuinely have a chance of winning.  In that respect, I am hopeful for our short term future.



In the long term, we have bought ourselves time to install a coach that can bring the stability we crave.  I firmly believe that Mr Short wants the club challenging further up the league and given that Lee Congerton is a key part of the recruitment process for players and now coach, an element of stability is already in place.  I know there are a number of caveats to this, perhaps unfounded, optimism, but if the next permanent appointment is right, and that is a big ‘if’ given our recent history, I can see the club progressing and further stability will follow from that, there are no more stable clubs than clubs that are winning more games than they are losing.  If we get it wrong, the cycle of instability will inevitably continue, but that is football and something we as Sunderland supporters are all too familiar with…



Leigh Ingle