Monday, 4 May 2009

The fall of the North-East three

Just when you thought things couldn’t get worse for Newcastle, Boro and Sunderland, they did – and it looks like there is worse still to come.

Thumped a collective 7-0 over the weekend, only the ineptness of West Brom and Hull can stop all three clubs tumbling down to the Championship next season.

So, where has it all gone wrong?Well, Sunderland seemed to have upset the football odds and pulled off a unique trick of spending millions and millions of pounds yet still have a dreadful team. Roy Keane was responsible for much of that over-spending. The moody Irishman’s aggressive forthright style worked for a period, but when things went wrong he didn’t have a plan B other than to shout at the players even more - something that doesn’t sit well with modern-day players’ over-inflated egos. No wonder there was a mini-celebration (allegedly) when he left.

His replacement, Ricky Sbragia, is the polar opposite. Nice and friendly, but certainly not ruthless enough to manage a football club. After an initial flurry of results (possibly still in celebration of Keane’s departure) the Black Cats have plummeted. A run of one win in ten and with trips to Bolton and Pompey and a home clash with Chelsea to come, things look bleak.

Another one too nice for his own good appears to be Boro boss Gareth Southgate. Well-respected in the game and always polite and well-spoken on camera, you get the impression he doesn’t....

Read the rest of my guest blog over at Dangerhere.

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