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The transfer window has now opened and the first thing on the agenda is to sort out our defence! We’ve been leaking in too many sloppy goals and it has to stop! Aside from the defence, I’ll be looking to add numbers in all departments of the squad and I immediately set off by signing Kingsley Coman and Jesse Lingard on loan from Juventus and Manchester United respectively. Kingsley is mainly a left midfielder but is capable of playing as a striker whiles Lingard offers options in centre midfield. Due to our involvements in the Capital One Cup and now the FA Cup, we only have two fixtures in the League against Spurs and Liverpool, two sides looking to qualify for next seasons Champion’s League. It’s going to be hard work but I feel as if we can come out of the other side with positive results.
Saturday 10th January 2015: FA Cup
Sunderland 0 Fulham 0
Pantilimon/ Robson/ Ake (O’Shea)/ Vergini/ Jones/ Coman (Giaccherini)/ Bridcutt/ Lingard/ Buckley/ Alvarez (Wickham)/ Altidore
MOTM: Chiki (Fulham)
In all honestly we didn’t deserve the draw. In fact, we should have been eliminated here and rightfully so. Fulham came to defend and defend they did. I knew what they were doing. They wanted to take the game back to the Cottage and try to exploit our dodgy away form. Yes, we played a weakened side but it was too weak if you get what I mean. In the replay, we need to work much harder than this.
My scouts came to me with a report on Reading’s Jordan Obita. A 21 year old left back with can also play left midfield and in the centre of the park. I offered the Royals £1.8 million and Jordi Gomez to help sweeten the deal. I didn’t think they’d accept but they did! We have a new recruit to help bulster our defensive options as well as the opportunity to play in midfield also.
Wednesday 14th January 2015: Capital One Cup Semi Final 1st Leg
Sunderland 4 Swansea City 2
Mannone/ Van Aanholt (Obita)/ Coates/ O’Shea/ Byram (Vergini)/ Borini (Coman)/ Cattermole/ Rodwell/ Johnson/ Alvarez/ Fletcher
Goals: Alvarez 35’ 41’ Borini 57’ (P), Coman 90’ Bony 10’ (P), Sigurasson 67’
We draw first blood in the Semi Final putting the pressure on Swansea going into the second leg. Bony got a questionable penalty but that just seemed to fire us up and we responded quickly with a double from Alvarez. When Swansea pulled it to 3-2, I thought we were going to throw it away in typical Sunderland fashion but our Loanee signing, Kingsley Coman, put the result well and truly in our favour by scoring his first goal for the club in the dying moments of the game. Amazing stuff!
Saturday 19th January 2015: Barclays Premier League
Tottenham Hotspur 1 Sunderland 0
Mannone/ Obita/ Coates/ O’Shea/ Jones/ Wickham/ Bridcutt/ Rodwell (Lingard)/ Johnson (Buckley)/ Borini/ Fletcher (Alvarez)
Goals: Adebayor 35’
MOTM: Vorm (Tottenham)
Although we got beat I was impressed by my defence. Spurs just happen to take a chance and it went it. Spurs have playing below expectations in the league this season so this was a vital victory for them. We had some chances but their keeper was on top of his game and he was voted the man of the match.
Wednesday 21st January 2015: FA Cup Replay
Fulham 1 Sunderland 2
Pantilimon/ Obita/ Coates/ Vergini/ Jones (Byram)/ Coman/ Cattermole/ Bridcutt/ Mavrias (Buckley)/ Alvarez/ Altidore
Goals: Coman 41’ Alvarez 57’ Ruiz 80’
MOTM: Parker (Fulham)
Why didn’t we not play this well at home? It boggles the mind. We progress to the next round where we’ll meet Nottingham Forest at home.
We part company with Cabral as he left to join German side Schalke 04 for £800k. It was good business for a player who had hardly had a foot in this season, but I did fancy the look of their young Turkish centre back, Kaan Ayhan. In addition of playing center back, Ayhan is also a right back and a central defensive midfielder. We snapped him up for £1.5 million and I’m confident that we have a player who is capable of staring in our line up for years to come.
Saturday 24th January 2015: Barclays Premier League
Sunderland 1 Liverpool 1
Mannone/ Van Aanholt/ Ayham/ O Shea/ Byram/ Wickham (Coman)/ Cattermole/ Lingard/ Johnson/ Alvarez (Mandron)/ Fletcher
Goals: Fletcher 29’ Henderson 84’
MOTM: Mannone (Sunderland)
Of all the players to score against us it had to have been Jordan Henderson. At least he showed respect after the goal unlike some former players have in the past. Liverpool have always had a positive home record so to get a draw at Anfield is a great result for us. We should have defended the corner that lead to Henderson’s goal a lot better but I’m not too disappointed about it though.
Wednesday 28th January 2015: Capital One Cup Semi Final 2nd Leg
Swansea City 1 (3) Sunderland 1 (5)
Mannone/ Obita/ Ayham/ O Shea/ Bryam/ Borini (Coman)/ Cattermole (Lingard)/ Rodwell/ Johnson (Buckley)/ Alvarez/ Fletcher
Goals: Johnson 60’ Bony 4’
MOTM: Cattermole (Sunderland)
For the second consecutive year in a row, we have reached the Capital One cup final and it didn’t come easy. Bony scored early on just like he did in the previous leg and Swansea were down 3-4 on aggregate, score another goal they’ll be going to Wembley on away goals. I didn’t want that to happen after all the progress we made throughout the competition.
Saturday 31st January 2015: FA Cup
Sunderland 0 Nottingham Forest 2
Pantilimon/ Obita/ Coates/ Vergini (Ayham)/ Jones/ Coman/ Cattermole/ Lingard/ Buckley/ Mandron/ Altidore
Goals: Fryatt 27’ 33’
Red Card: Reid 48’
MOTM: Fryatt (Notts Forest)
From the highs to the lows, we were knocked out of the FA Cup by Nottingham Forest. Stuart Pearce’s men deserved the victory. I guess most of our players had their minds set on another trip to Wembley and as a result, they weren’t focused on the task in hand. Unacceptable! We should be focused on every game. Good luck to Forest, one of my mates is a Forest fan so I guess he’s pleased with the result. It’s yet another game where a former player scored against us. Damn you Matty Fryatt!
It’s transfer deadline day. The day where all clubs go crazy and teenage boys get hard ons by sticking their middle figures up at the Sky Sports camera like the little rebels that they are (OOC: To those Aston Villa fans who brought the blow up doll to their ground this year, you guys are awesome!) One major outgoing was striker Jozy Altidore re-joining relegation threatened side, Hull City for £7 million. If that isn’t panic buying I don’t know what is! Speaking about Hull City, we picked up Tom Huddlestone for the bargain price of £2.5 million. What an absolute steal right there! Matthew Briggs will be joining us in the summer from Millwall on a free transfer and we paid £400k for MK Dons wonderkid, Dele Alli. Finally, we wrapped up our transfer dealings by bringing in Arsenal right back Hector Bellerin for £30k. Yes, 30k!
Player of the month: Kingsley Coman
In the short space of time that he’s been here, Kingsley has made a massive impact. He’s created 3 assists and scored 2 goals. I’m looking forward to his development come the end of the season!