2,040 Sunderland fans deliver interesting Kristjaan Speakman verdict in online poll

Sunderland fans have delivered their verdict on sporting director Kristjaan Speakman’s tenure in an online poll conducted by The Echo.

Speakman was appointed back in December 2020 and overseen a radical overhaul of the club’s playing squad with the Wearsiders focusing on their academy, and buying young players to be nurtured and blooded in the first team.

It is a strategy that has produced results, with Speakman providing a squad that Alex Neil managed to brilliantly turn into promotion winners following Lee Johnson’s under-achievement.

However, with any recruitment strategy, there are pros and cons and Speakman has been criticised for not providing Sunderland with enough depth, as evidenced by the injuries to Ross Stewart and Ellis Simms, leaving Tony Mowbray without any senior strikers.

But what do Sunderland fans think of Speakman’s time at Sunderland? The Echo asked supporters on Twitter in an online poll to canvass opinion. Here are our findings:

- 26 per cent of the 2,040 Sunderland fans polled stated that Speakman is doing a “brilliant” job.

- 67.7 per cent of Black Cats supporters responded that the sporting director is doing an “above average” job.

- Just 4.8 per cent said that Speakman was doing a “below average” job.

Sunderland fans at Watford

- 1.6 per cent of people polled voted for the “poor” option.

What else are fans saying about the job Speakman has done?

@adamreeek: “Above average due to the fact we’ve been promoted and are 5th in the league. But he’s still left us short in certain areas through his recruitment.”

@younge199: “Look where we are and the team we've got, it's as simple as that.”

@eff_tee_emm: “We have made some excellent signings, got rid of the dead wood and have achieved promotion. Achieving managerial stability and agreeing new contracts with better players (Stewart, Pritchard) still to do.”

@Ethan__Todd2: “Above average given the success of last season, the promising signings and our current position with the squad he had greatly engineered. However, given that we have been left short in certain areas and the Defoe saga he certainly hasn’t been brilliant.

@MichaelBowers15: “For me, despite some mistakes that he deserves criticism for (which is why I can’t say brilliant), you can’t go any lower than ‘above average. More good signings than bad ones have been made for me.”