Wise Men Say: Change is needed if Sunderland are to become a force in League One
It seems to be the flavour of the month, change.
Labour have led with it in their General Election campaign slogan and so to a different kind of change in Brexit didn’t materialise.
The clocks have changed and so have the leaves on the trees, but ultimately, nothing at Sunderland has to changed, yet. Or so it seems.
We’ve changed our manager but the performances haven’t changed.
In the first six games of Phil Parkinson’s tenure you can only count one game in which we’ve looked a different side, and albeit the team we were up against weren’t very impressive.
Each game comes and the performances are questioned, still.
There is reason to remain positive, of course, with the developments on the horizon now thanks to a handsome sum injected by some wealthy men, we don’t know what it is for yet, but surely, it’ll help with the must needed ‘change’.
And this change will of course be evident on the pitch when it comes to fruition, though first it must come from the powers that be - and soon.
January 2020 is around the corner and Sunderland are still yet to produce a forceful crusade on League One and it’ll be harder if we’re lumbering outside the play-off positions come Boxing Day.Sunderland must have a clear strategy to identify real improvements before January comes so that any business done in the winter market can be done early and effectively.
We’ve been down this road before, waiting for January to help get ourselves out of a mess, though this time around it’s different, we can’t afford to become a basic League One club. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
It’s clear that many supporters share opinions on where we needed to strengthen in the summer, and I doubt it has taken Parkinson long to identify what he thinks his side is lacking and who will strengthen it. Arguably, only the centre-half partnership has been a successful improvement.
They’ve cemented their positions and have come into their own, though across the rest of the pitch we’re lacking in creativity, athleticism and power.
It can be said that Phil Parkinson has his hands tied until he’s allowed the opportunity to make amendments on this inherited squad and it can’t go unnoticed that the current squad have frequently been labelled ‘a good enough side’. They’re not playing like one.
It’s now up to Tony Coton and his team to deliver, more so now than ever since arriving at the Stadium of Light as this’ll be the fourth transfer window under the current regime and Sunderland can’t afford to linger for too long in an unwanted division.
As I sit here, in an extremely busy Starbucks coffee shop listening to ‘Across the Universe’ by the Beatles, I’m hoping that change is coming, and we’ll see Sunderland finally put their stamp on this seasonal campaign and offer fans something to be proud of.