Wise Men Say: Not good enough, not by a long way, Sunderland

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The latest side to show Sunderland how to be clinical at the top level, is a side who grabbed their first ever home win at that level in the process.

Who’s actually surprised by that?

In all honesty?

We can’t blame “this group of players” any more either – there is a marked improvement in the playing staff from last season.

Nor can we conclude that the ridiculous trip to America and Canada over the summer is still taking toll, and the club certainly isn’t cursed like some suggest.

Despite the blood boiling inside of me, I’m going to try and be objective and look for positives.

Though Matt Ritchie could have been closed down quicker, his strike for 2-0 was so good it was almost freakish. There’s little that can be done about such a thing.

Bournemouth didn’t carve us open like Leicester and Norwich did, they just took their one main chance in the first half in addition to that goal.

If Jermain Defoe had taken his two very good chances then we’d have been level by half-time.

The linesman robbed us of getting a goal back that I think would have put them on the ropes a little bit.

They’re all pivotal moments and it’s hard not to feel we’re due a break. Fans of other clubs, all who seem tired by our ability to cling on to Premier League status despite being a bit rubbish, would argue we’ve had a lot of breaks in recent years.

Right, that’s the positive thinking done and it doesn’t make me feel any better.

We deserved to lose the game, let’s be clear.

I don’t even have the inclination to rip into the players either. I feel like the parent telling their kids that they aren’t even mad with them for taking the last cookie without asking.

I’m not mad, I’m just very disappointed.

It’s constant letdown after constant letdown and I think I speak for all Sunderland fans when I say I’m fed up with it.

If the collective application of the players is at the maximum, we don’t lose to Bournemouth.

With respect and all that. Dick Advocaat has alluded to this himself, and becomes the latest in a line of managers just bemused at what he sees once the players cross the white line.

What will it take to get through to this team that they are NOT good enough to turn up and go through the motions? The Norwich result should have shown them that.

The predicament they were in before Advocaat arrived should have shown them that. The 20 minutes after they went two up against Exeter in the League Cup should have shown them that.

The new players appear to be taking a leaf out of the old guard’s’ book.

Isn’t it supposed to be the other way around?

The reasons for these continued displays are aren’t solely down to effort, of course, and the manager has to take some criticism for certain team selections and team shapes in some games this season. But, to be frank, these Premier League footballers should be doing better.

Seb Coates increasingly looks like the player he was under Gus Poyet and Jordi Gomez really does need the proverbial rocket up his backside.

There was a bit of irony in the fact that Younes Kaboul’s newly-found confidence probably aided his decision to try and pinch the ball from Callum Wilson for the first goal, when it simply wasn’t there to be won.

Defoe keeps missing chances, too. Against Spurs, and now Bournemouth, better finishing could have us another three or four points on the board.

No, to reiterate, again, and again, Premier League footballers should be doing better. It is not good enough.

Nice easy trip to Old Trafford next.

The Wise Men Say podcast is available every Monday, with SAFC debate from a variety of guests and post-match reaction. You can stream it direct from wisemensay.co.uk or subscribe to it on iTunes.