New Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio has said that he cannot wait for the Chelsea match during the weekend. The north-east club appointed the former Swindon Town manager as the replacement for Martin O'Neill within a few days after his sacking.
The appointment of the 44-year-old has drawn mixed reaction due to the enigmatic character. He will be having one of the toughest assignments for a manager at a new club, as he will be leading his team to face Chelsea during the weekend. The away trip to Stamford Bridge will be one of the toughest between now and then of the season for Sunderland.
The team are just one point above the relegation zone with only seven matches remaining in the campaign. Di Canio has recalled how he has experienced the success against Chelsea as a player with West Ham United. The 44-year-old Italian scored a stunning volley back in 2006. He has said that it is extremely important that the players make an impact in the first match itself. Due to the fact that they are facing the European champions, Di Canio has said that there is extra motivation within the squad.
However, Di Canio will have to deal with several injury problems in his squad with the likes of Carlos Cuellar doubtful. "(We are) away from home against Chelsea, where obviously I have good memories and scored when I was a footballer. But I'm not a footballer now, I'm a manager and now I hope my players will score there and give us some points. It's fantastic. The players will be motivated on their own; they live to play on the big stage. Obviously we are going to give them extra motivation to try to get a very good result," said Di Canio ahead of the trip to Chelsea on Sunday evening.
Sunderland has been defeated by West Bromwich Albion in a Premier League match played at The Hawthorns on Saturday. West Brom won the match by a close margin of 2-1.
This win took West Brom pretty close to Everton in the points table. The Baggies are now only a couple of points behind Everton. West Brom has 40 points in 27 matches, while, Everton has 42 points in the same number of matches.
In the first 20 minutes, the game was pretty slow and there were not many opportunities created. But, after the 20th minute mark, slowly, the Black Cats started getting into their groove and started creating opportunities.
The first goal scoring chance came Sunderland’s way when Danny Graham gave Steven Fletcher a decent cross and Fletcher beat the West Brom goalie with a flat shot, but, he was unlucky that he couldn’t find the back of the net. The ball bounced back after hitting the post. However, Fletcher still had opportunity as the ball came towards him on the rebound. But, the Scot missed the target again. This time, his shot went over the goal post and Sunderland couldn’t take the lead.
West Brom earned a penalty in the 35th minute of the match and it was Romelu Lukaku who took the shot. The 19 years old Belgian didn’t miss the target. With a powerful shot, he beat the Sunderland goalkeeper and the score became 1-0 in the favour of West Brom.
West Brom took a 2-0 lead in the 75th minute when Lukaku found the back of the net for the second time in the match. Titus Bramble gave Simon Mignolet a back pass and the goalkeeper tried to clear it, but, instead of clearing, he ended up pushing the ball to Lukaku who was not going to miss out on that chance. With a deflection, he found the back of the net and put the Black Cats under tremendous pressure.
Just four minutes later, the lead got reduced to 1-2 when Stephane Sessegnon scored the first goal for Sunderland. The match got pretty exciting after that goal. But, thereafter, the West Brom team started playing defensively and made sure that Sunderland wouldn’t score any more goals.
This was Sunderland’s 12th defeat in the ongoing Premier League. The Black Cats currently have 29 points in 25 matches and they are at the 15th position in the points table.
Sunderland will take on Fulham in its next match on 2nd of March at the Stadium of Light.
The FA Cup match played between Sunderland and Bolton Wanderers at Reebok Stadium on Saturday has ended in a draw. There were four goals scored in the match, two by each team.
It was a great comeback by the Black Cats.
At one point of time, they were trailed by 0-1 and it seemed that they would have to suffer their second consecutive defeat, but, they played some outstanding football in the later part of the second half and managed to equalize the scores.
Bolton Wanderers were off to a great start in the match. They took the lead in the 12th minute of the match with the goal of Chung-Yong Lee. Lee took advantage of a mistake by Carlos Cuellar and tapped the ball past Mignolet who was not in the right position to stop the ball.
Bolton’s lead was doubled just after the half time break. Again, it was poor defending by the Black Cats. Marvin Sordell was given enough room to deflect the corner kick into the bottom corner of the net with a header.
The Black Cats managed to reduce the lead to 1-2 in the 60th minute with the goal of Connor Wickham who beat the Bolton goalkeeper with a powerful shot from a close distance.
The scores got levelled in the 75th minute. The Bolton defenders failed in clearing a corner kick and the ball went to Gardner who didn’t miss out. He blasted the ball into the top corner of the net and made the match quite exciting.
There were a few minutes still left in the game and anything could have happened. But, both the teams opted to play defensive football in the remaining time and ended up grabbing one point each.
Sunderland’s next match will be a Premier League encounter against West Ham United at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.
The former Manchester United defender Wes Brown has had a tough life at Sunderland ever since completing the move a few seasons ago. The manager Martin O'Neill has now confirmed that he will not be available for selection until New Year.
This is a major injury worry for the 33-year-old, who has had a stop start career in the last few seasons. Wes Brown was a Manchester United youth academy product, but he was recently allowed by Sir Alex Ferguson to sign for Sunderland. Sunderland escaped relegation in the most impressive fashion following the arrival of Martin O'Neill last season.
However, the former Aston Villa man has been unable to recreate the magic this season as well, but this has been partly down to the huge number of injury problems including the absence of Wes Brown for a number of matches. O'Neill said a few weeks before that he expected Brown to be back in the thick of first-team action, but he has apparently suffered a setback in his recovery. As a result, he will not be available until New Year. This is a major blow to the team because Wes Brown is one of the experienced defenders within the squad.
"Wes had a setback in his recovery. He was training with us and doing well when he had a setback and we will assess how much of a setback it is. He wants to see a specialist who was on holiday last week so he hadn't ability to do that. The fella is down in London, he knows Wes inside out and he is the man Wes wants to see," said Martin O'Neill. It has been a difficult first 13 games for Sunderland, but they finally managed a respectable result in the form of the 3-1 win over Fulham.
The defender of Sunderland, Wes Brown, has discovered a fresh calf injury which has reduced his chances of making a comeback soon. Brown hasn’t played even a single match for Sunderland in the ongoing season so far due to the knee injury that he had discovered earlier this year. He had been recovering well from the knee injury and was expected to come back in the Sunderland squad in a few days, but, he has been hit by another injury and it might take him some more days to regain complete fitness.
Brown had signed for Sunderland last summer after leaving Manchester United. He had joined the club on a contract of four years. He had played his first match for United against Liverpool and he was named as the player of the match in his debut game. He had scored his first goal for the Black Cats against Queens Park Rangers in December last year. That goal helped Sunderland secure a win in that match. In January this year, he injured his knee while playing in a match against Middlesbrough and he has been out of the action since then.
Talking to the reporters in the press conference ahead of Sunderland’s match against Wigan Athletic, Martin O’ Neill said, “Brown has discovered another injury which is not good news for us. We want him back in the team soon, but, it seems that we would have to wait for a few more weeks to have him back.”
When asked about the fitness of Fraizer Campbell who had suffered a leg injury in the match against West Ham United last Saturday, Neill said, “Campbell would be fine in a couple of days. It was a painful blow, but, the X-ray reports have shown that there is nothing serious.”
Sunderland will take on Manchester City in its next match on 6th of October at Etihad Stadium.
Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill has said that he still has to wait for the scan results in order to assess the injury extent to the defender Wes Brown. The former Manchester United defender appeared to suffer a major injury in the 3-2 win over Groningen. This was the first match Sunderland took part in following their return to England after playing pre-season friendly matches in various areas of the world. The 32-year-old defender is regarded as one of the key members of the squad. His absence will prove to be extremely costly for the manager in the early part of the campaign.
Depending upon the extent of the injury, it is thought that Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill will be making some new signings in the defensive department in order to cover the absence. However, the former Aston Villa manager is not making any moves until he gets the definite verdict on his injury. Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill recently had a bid rejected for £ 12 million for the Wolves striker Fletcher. After losing strikers like Gyan and Bendtner, Sunderland will be looking to bring in the Wolves striker in order to bolster the striking options. Martin O'Neill is aiming for a top 10 finish this season.
"He will be assessed. He is doing some scans and I'm hoping that the news is going to be okay. But his knee is really swollen. Norwich had asked us about it before Wes' injury and so having given permission for Michael to go down there and the clubs having agreed a fee, it was just ironic that Wes got injured at the time. We will see what develops down in Norwich, but I am hoping that Wes' injury is not as bad as it might have been," said Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill.
Sunderland forward Stephane Sessegnon has had a great season for the club in the Premier league, which has in turn led to numerous reports linking him with a move abroad.
However, the 27-year-old has now said that he wants to stay at Sunderland and honour his contract because he still has a lot of work to do. The forward recently was voted as the fans' Player of the Year, and the award was presented to him on Monday. Recently, there has been reports linking him with a move to French club Paris St Germain, who are currently managed by former Chelsea and AC Milan manager Carlo Ancelotti.
The Benin international has been a huge success at the stadium of light ever since moving to the club a few seasons ago. He has been a first-team regular under Steve Bruce and continues to do so under Martin O'Neill as well. Speaking on the occasion of receiving the award, the forward said that he wanted to stay at Sunderland, despite rumours linking him with a move abroad. Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill is expected to make vital changes to the club in the summer in order to be free of relegation troubles next season. However, Stephane Sessegnon has been told he will play a major part next season.
"I have got no problem with life here, and it's always good news to hear that the manager wants to keep you. I'm aware of the speculation, but I can't do anything about it. As I have said before, I don't feel that my work here is finished. It's true that when I first came here, it was hard to get used to the style of play. But now I like the Premier League and I think I have improved. I'm playing for a team who like to play football, with great fans," said Sessegnon.
Former Manchester United defender Wes Brown has said that the players at Sunderland are all facing the axe – if they fail to perform – after the arrival of new manager Martin O'Neill.
Martin O'Neill has replaced Steve Bruce has the manager at Sunderland after the former Manchester United defender oversaw one of the worst starts to the season. Despite spending a lot of money, Sunderland are down at the bottom of the table. Sunderland managed to sack Steve Bruce knowing that the January transfer window is only a few weeks away, and it would provide the new manager with a chance to make some changes to his squad.
Martin O'Neill was chosen as the replacement for Steve Bruce. O'Neill has been out of work since resigning from Aston Villa last season. He has been linked with a number of jobs recently, but it seems that the Irishman has chosen Sunderland as the perfect destination. It is very much similar to the job he has taken before at Leicester City and at Aston Villa. Wes Brown was one of the major arrivals at Sunderland this season, as he arrived along with a crop of other Manchester United players transferred by the manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
Now, he says that no one is safe in the club, and that everyone should be cautious about their position at the club. "We were maybe feeling sorry for ourselves and the rest is history. The new manager will definitely bring a feel-good factor. This is a new start. We know the qualities he's got and he's going to put all his experience into the team. We're looking forward to it but the Wolves game was disappointing," Wes Brown said after the 2-1 defeat – a matching in which Sunderland lost from a winning position – at the hands of Wolverhampton Wanderers.