Premier League review: Sunderland shine amid the snow
After the sackings, a salient question. Given owners are now treating football clubs purely like ruthless companies, removing managers who were attaining healthy results, it seemed relevant and slightly humorous that one supporter asked: “If Sunderland was a high flying investment company, [after their 1-0 win over Bolton] who do you think deserved a bonus?”
The answer was – with a quick peek at the post’s headline, “Brucie Bonus” – Steve Bruce, right, whose guidance inspired his side to victory thanks to Danny Welbeck’s fifth goal in six games. In tune with the forum user’s musing, Darren Bent may also deserve one. “If it wasn’t for [Bent's] excellent control the only goal would not have been scored,” wrote one fan. A midfielder who was undeserving of any positive mention, however, was Lee Cattermole. “I was not impressed by Cattermole – lots of heart but not enough brains,” voiced a Black Cat follower. “[He] makes rash, careless challenges.”
One figure that was definitely on the rise was Sunderland’s points tally. Bruce’s boys now have 27 after 18 games, propelling them up to sixth position in the league. A very merry Christmas, then, for Bruce, and he’ll hope for a happy, points-filled new year.
Despite the snow accounting for the postponement of seven Premier League games, Ewood Park was deemed playable for Blackburn’s meeting with West Ham. Junior Stanislas scored for the visitors after Ryan Nelsen had nudged Blackburn in front as the encounter finished 1-1.
Avram Grant, who is clinching on for dear life to his West Ham post, remained upbeat despite the draw. “The [players’] spirit is very high,” Grant claimed. “I’m confident we can do it [turn the results around]”.
There was mixed reaction on the message boards. One Hammers fan was supportive, barking this exhortation: “Stand by Avram!” While another described Grant as a “dead man walking” before an Arsenal supporter posed the proposition of installing the newly-sacked Sam Allardyce as their manager. “Big Sam has the experience and the record of getting results for a side in your position,” he remarked.
One avid Upton Park follower simply asked: “What happened to the bubbles?” You hope West Ham’s players will receive tidings of energy and optimism for Christmas. They’ll need it.
Picture: Getty ImagesTagged in: Blackburn, Bolton, football, Sunderland, West Ham
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