Joseph Owens: Margins are tight but Dick Advocaat’s record suggests Sunderland should stay up

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A LOT of information has been presented about Dick Advocaat but what have Sunderland really acquired as a new, albeit temporary, head coach?

Advocaat’s CV is littered with domestic and international prowess with him most notably taking the helm of the Netherlands, Russian and Belgian national sides. Alongside this he has also applied his trade with PSV Eindhoven, Borussia Mönchengladbach and closer to home Rangers.

Statistically Advocaat’s most successful tenure was whilst he was in charge at PSV – achieving a ratio of 2.12 points per match. His accomplishments were looked upon so highly that 14 years later he was asked to return to the Dutch club.

In fact Advocaat has only accumulated under a one point per game ratio in two of his 17 managerial and coaching duties. During Advocaat’s first game you could see the changes that he was trying to implement. Getting the ball forward quicker to a front three rather than two.

It allowed Sunderland’s attack to get in behind the Hammers defence, something that certainly didn’t happen often under Gus Poyet. The Derby could define Advocaat’s status as an instant success or simply pile on more relegation resentment.

If Advocaat can keep up his near conclusive ratio of over one point per game Sunderland would finish the season with at least 34 points, short of the 40-point safety net but in a season where margins are so tight at both ends, it may just be enough to stay up.

* This article was sent into the Echo by a reader for our new Black Cats eight-page supplement, titled The Roar! - which will be in the paper every Wednesday.

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