Q&A With Sunderland

  • October 31, 2017 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/30494

Simon Grayson could be the Championship's next managerial casualty, should Sunderland fail to register victory over Bolton on Tuesday.

Those are the views of Black Cats supporter Colin Randall, editor at Salut! Sunderland, who spoke to us ahead of the midweek Sky Bet Championship fixture between the two sides at the Stadium of Light.

In the following Q&A interview, Colin shares his views on Grayson's disastrous reign thus far, why not all of the club's problems are down to him, as well as an insight into weaknesses that could see Wanderers leave Wearside with points.

Q: Sunderland are really struggling at the moment and are yet to record a home victory this year. What does Simon Grayson have to do to turn things around?

A: Many, maybe most supporters, would say he should resign. I am less sure.

He was dealt a terrible hand. He's had no money despite the £30m received for Jordan Pickford, an owner who just wants out and a complete lack of confidence and - dare I say it - desire amongst the players he inherited.

Two or three quick wins would make a lot of the anger and gloom recede. If not, then I think he needs to be gone by Christmas - provided anyone who is any good is daft enough to replace him.

Q: Grayson joined Sunderland from Preston with a respectable reputation and was expected to at least rejuvenate a struggling side. What have you made of the job he has done so far?

A: He seems to lack organisational flair and has been outwitted by almost every visiting manager.

His substitutions and/or lack of them have irritated the fans and he hasn't a clue what his best side is.

Otherwise, perfect.

Q: On paper, Sunderland have one of the strongest squads in the league - with the likes of Lewis Grabban, Aiden McGeady and James Vaughan. What has gone wrong this season - has the team failed to gel or is the weak mentality of last season's campaign still lurking beneath?

A: There is something seriously wrong at the club. The ownership issue, the debts and the lack of spending power are all taking their toll.

Pals who suffer week after week - l spend a lot of time abroad so am spared - say it's painful to watch. Individuals have talent but it's not coming together.

Q: Looking forward to Tuesday's game - who would you pick out as Sunderland's biggest threat and who would you identify as Bolton's key man?

A: Grabban gets a few goals though can't jump, Duncan Watmore has pace and is nearly back to full fitness, and McGeady is capable of scoring from distance. The trouble is these things don't tend to happen in the same match.

Without knowing the line-ups, Sammy Ameobi for Bolton because he's a Magpie, while both Ben Alnwick and Will Buckley will have points to prove at either end.

Q: Finally, how do you see Tuesday's game planning out? Will Sunderland finally record their first home victory of the year or will Bolton pick up their first three points up on the road?

A: We have to win sometime. I am not sure how Grayson, for all his disadvantages, can survive if we don't.

But if you weather a mild early storm and get in a few average crosses, it could all go wrong for us yet again.

I will go for a nervy 2-1 home win - without the least confidence.

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Sky Bet League Two Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
11 Port Vale 14 19
12 Harrogate Town 14 19
13 Bolton Wanderers 14 19
14 Morecambe 14 19
15 Crawley Town 14 18
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Poll

Who is Bolton's 2018/19 Player of the Year?
34.62% Gary O'Neil
19.38% David Wheater
18.92% Pawel Olkowski
9.27% Joe Williams
5.33% Jason Lowe
4.13% Sammy Ameobi
2.85% Josh Magennis
2.75% Mark Beevers
1.19% Jack Hobbs
1.01% Ben Alnwick
0.28% Andrew Taylor
0.28% Craig Noone