Poyet: Sunderland’s problems are deep-rooted in the club

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini (left) and Sunderland manager Gus Poyet (right) watch the match action from the touchline during the Capital One Cup Final at Wembley Stadium, London.
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini (left) and Sunderland manager Gus Poyet (right) watch the match action from the touchline during the Capital One Cup Final at Wembley Stadium, London.
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GUS Poyet is convinced Sunderland problems are rooted deep inside the club and not just in the identity of the man who occupies the manager’s office, and recent history suggests he may have a point.

The 46-year-old Uruguayan is the sixth man to do the job in less than six years, and he believes that tells its own story.

Poyet, who admitted he was unaware of former chairman and manager Niall Quinn’s past reference to the presence of “gremlins” on Wearside, said: “It’s true that from outside it has been always, looking at this football club and its fans, a very difficult place to come.

“But everybody keeps talking about when Peter Reid was here with Niall Quinn and Kevin Phillips, and after that I don’t think it was a difficult place to come.

“We could be talking for two hours about what we think and everything goes back to the same place, so I don’t think those two years can put any expectations in the minds of fans who have been here for 50 years or the kids or the new fans who have been here maybe 10.

“I think sometimes when things don’t work, it’s natural that you change the manager and get another and if it doesn’t work again, you have got a chance to change the manager again.

“And then the third time, I’d like to think about it because I don’t think it’s the manager anymore when it’s four or five.

“Do I try to get away from my responsibility? Not at all. I’m in charge, I pick the team, I am responsible.

“Now if you want me to lie, I have got no problem. It’s very easy, it’s easy to lie. I can tell you any lie you want to hear and agree with everybody, and this club is going to be in the same situation next year with me or with somebody else.”