Vital Football

Latest Sunderland AFC News

Settling For Second Best Again?

Settling For Second Best Again?

Let us hope that the most recent rumours regarding Sunderland targets are no more accurate than they have been all summer- Bramble? James? Campbell?

Are these players who will lift a Sunderland team who certainly scrap harder than they used to, but continue to lack speed of thought and action and are prone to giving the ball away needlessly when pressed.

Steve Bruce diagnosed the shortcomings quite accurately at the end of last season- the team will not progress into that comfortable mid-table zone where it can develop thoughts about European qualification while the centre of defence too often resembles a revolving door and the there is insufficient pace, positional sense and general football intelligence at full-back.

A centre-back who is fast, comfortable on the ball and can recover when 'wrong-sided' without fouling remains the main priority. While he is brave, this is not Bramble.

While he reads the game better, this is not a thirty-five year old Campbell. We already have in Ferdinand someone who tries hard but does not combine the guile and pace required for regular success in the Premier League- neither do these.

Indeed, it is not altogether reassuring to hear Bruce say that Bardsley and Ferdinand have returned with the right attitudes. It is not their attitudes that have been wanting in the past , but their footballing skills. Both regularly get caught out of position and concede free kicks.

How many points were lost last season because we could not retain possession for the last quarter when ahead, and conceded silly free kicks? The priority is for skilful defenders who are comfortable in possession, can move forward sensibly and retain the ball, but know where to be to when the opposition have it.

Two genuine Premier League defenders- even if they cost £20 million, will be a better investment than four or five who are not really up to it. So get on with the clear-out Steve - there is nothing that happened in the summer which has made any of those you identified for moving on better players now than they were when they came up short last season- it is just that the memory of their shortcomings has faded a little. And let us push for two really good signings, players who can sit comfortably in a back four with genuine European ambitions.

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Date:Tuesday July 20 2010
Time: 10:38AM


Bramble ia an ideal sub for either Mensah or Turner. (When fit and not suspended). So a good buy. He may even force Michael Turner out of the starting 11. A far better option than Sol Campbell. Let him go to the Tachems. He'll be struggling this season.
03/08/2010 00:56:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Best of Vital Network

Recent Sunderland A.F.C. Articles

Sunderland's League Cup Ball Number Known (26/10/16)

With the fourth round ties now almost done and dusted, clubs have been allocated ball numbers for the League Cup quarter final round draw later this evening.

After Game Player Interviews Explained

Scientific researchers have discovered that a tendency for professional footballers to overuse the words 'um' 'ah' and 'err' in post game press interviews...

League Cup Quarter Final Draw Tonight

With the League Cup fourth round ties taking place on Tuesday evening, and some games tonight, it has been confirmed the fifth round draw for this year's competition...

Changing Manager Is Not The Answer says Moyes

David Moyes wants the club, players and fans all to pull together and back him as he tries to turn things around at Sunderland.

Archived Vital Sunderland Articles

Vital Sunderland articles from

Site Journalists

Editor email

Current Poll (see more polls)

MOTM v West Ham (a)
Suggested By: Harry Redknapp
van Aanholt 6%
Watmore -750%
Pienaar -800%
Khazri -8613%
Jones +860%
McNair +800%
Gooch +756%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Man City 9 6 2 1 20 11
2 Arsenal 9 6 2 1 20 10
3 Liverpool 9 6 2 1 20 9
4 Chelsea 9 6 1 2 19 10
5 Spurs 9 5 4 0 19 9
6 Everton 9 4 3 2 15 5
7 Man Utd 9 4 2 3 14 1
8 Southampton 9 3 4 2 13 3
9 Watford 9 3 3 3 12 0
10 AFC Bournemouth 9 3 3 3 12 0
11 Crystal Palace 9 3 2 4 11 0
12 Leicester City 9 3 2 4 11 -4
13 WBA 9 2 4 3 10 0
14 Burnley 9 3 1 5 10 -5
15 West Ham 9 3 1 5 10 -7
16 Stoke 9 2 3 4 9 -7
17 Middlesbrough 9 1 4 4 7 -4
18 Hull City 9 2 1 6 7 -14
19 Swansea 9 1 2 6 5 -7
20 Sunderland 9 0 2 7 2 -10
The Vital Football Members League
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
Vital Football Comment

Recent Sunderland A.F.C. Results (view all)

Sunderland A.F.C. Fixtures (view all)

Oct 29 2016 12:30PM : Arsenal (H)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 5 2016 3:00PM : AFC Bournemouth (a)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 19 2016 3:00PM : Hull City (H)
Barclays Premier League
Nov 26 2016 3:00PM : Liverpool (a)
Barclays Premier League
Dec 3 2016 3:00PM : Leicester City (H)
Barclays Premier League
Dec 10 2016 3:00PM : Swansea City (a)
Barclays Premier League

Vital Members League Table

1.Gregory Pecker37
2.idle eric25
3.Dirty Dave21
5.giant pig14
7.francis batter7
8.acid man7
10.Tommy The Turd4
Write for Vital Football