Tales From Not The Top Flight: Are Sunderland Actually Good?

Tales from not-the Top Flight

Sunderland actually won a professional football match that mattered. Yes, seriously. The Black Cats defeated Norwich City at the weekend as they delivered a good performance, and I have to be honest it was all a bit too much to take. Lewis Grabban even scored a hat trick – admittedly the third was an own goal – as Sunderland secured a 3-1 victory on the road! Personally I had Sunderland down as bottom half strugglers but Simon Grayson and co must be doing something right because the North East side have collected four points from their opening two games. Maybe a play-off push isn’t so far off after all.

I know they say that its pointless looking at the table after two games, but I’m going to do it anyway. Cardiff are currently top as Neil Warnock’s boy won at the weekend while its strange to see the likes of Ipswich and Forest up there given the struggles of last season. I’m sure this will even itself out over the next few weeks. Jorge Mendes FC’s bold strategy of spending a lot of money to bring in quality players and managers is somehow working as they secured a 2-0 win over Derby at the weekend. The Rams haven’t got off to a flyer but are on the verge of signing Tom Lawrence – who should add creativity to the fold.

Steve Bruce might need to resurrect that mystery novel writing career (yes that is a thing) as his Aston Villa side slumped to a 3-0 away loss to the aforementioned Cardiff City. Anything less than top six has to be considered a failure for Villa and their Chinese owner, Tony Xia, will have no problem sacking Bruce if results do not pick up in the immediate future. Expect some panic buys on deadline day from big Steve, I mean what is Peter Odemwingie up to these days? Well before we go on in turns out he’s playing in Indonesia where he’s scored 13 goals in 17 appearances. Fair play.

Right onto the Boro where we just about managed to beat Sheffield United despite their 92nd minute leveller was ruled out for offside. I have heavily criticised the poor officiating in the Championship before, but on second thoughts it does have its advantages. Former Boro loan star, Tomas Kalas, now of Fulham had a very short weekend after he got sent off after 39 seconds. Impressive indeed, although his teammates still managing to get a point from the game is even more impressive.

There is some midweek action to look forward to on Tuesday and Harry Redknapp is complaining about a lack of signings. In more shocking news, water is wet.