Being a Sunderland fan in recent years has been perhaps the most arduous of football fan tasks. The Black Cats have been in rapid decline in recent years. After flirting with relegation from the Premier League on four occasions Sunderland finally went down last term. Now it seems they are heading for back-to-back relegations after Simon Grayson and now new manager Chris Coleman both failed to spring Sunderland back into life.
For most Sunderland fans the blame lies majoritively at one person’s door, chairman Ellis Short.
Sunderland are currently in their worst footballing position since 1987 and face only their second ever season outside the top two leagues in English football. Off the pitch things are not much better, with the club’s finances a serious concern.
What Sunderland need is a hero and perhaps they have it, according to some reports. Niall Quinn is apparently interested in taking over the club yet again. It is reported by the BBC among other publications that Quinn is heading up a consortium interested in taking over the club from the American.
Immediately, Sunderland fans got excited at the news. Quinn is a hero at the Stadium of Light after his excellent playing days at the club. He also owned the club from 2006 until Short’s takeover in 2009 and to say he is popular with Sunderland fans would be something of a gross understatement.
His return to Wearside would undoubtedly give Sunderland fans renewed hope that the club might eventually be able to turn things around and return to the Premier League.
On twitter Sunderland fans have been celebrating the potential news. Many have compared Quinn’s potential return to the Stadium of Light to almost biblical proportions.
Others are however skeptical. Whilst there seems to be credence to the stories many Sunderland fans are rightly pessimistic. After the run of luck they have endured, such cynicism is a fair defence mechanism.
Hopefully though this does turn out to be true. The return of Quinn is exactly what Sunderland need to turn around their dreadful recent fortunes and get back to their best.
Here is some of the best reaction on Twitter to the news…
Just listened to BBC Newcastle claiming Niall Quinn (+ two businessmen) has agreed a deal in principle with Ellis Short.
HUGE SCENES. #SAFC
— Michael Potts (@MJPotts17) March 26, 2018
Niall Quinn’s return to Sunderland….. pic.twitter.com/GphLIqkMR0
— cheeses of nazereth (@cheesesofnaz) March 26, 2018
Niall Quinn coming back to Sunderland would bring the club back to life. He knows he can turn it around and we as fans believe in him.
Get ready for Magic Carpet Ride #2 boys and girls ?
— Connor Bromley (@ConnorBromley) March 25, 2018
NIALL RETURN Niall Quinn in stunning talks to return to crisis-club Sunderland and take over from Ellis Short
Quinn came to their rescue in 2006 and helped to guide them back to the Premier League https://t.co/973qugCb4z
— Macca (@sunderlandafc11) March 25, 2018
Stay calm, I repeat everyone stay calm! https://t.co/pjtAKamXsj
— ALS: SAFC FANZINE (@ALS_Fanzine) March 26, 2018
Niall Quinn rocking up at the SoL next season like pic.twitter.com/3a8LPtPOgN
— Damian Brown (@RasTrentish) March 25, 2018
NIALL QUINN HAD A DREAM
TO SAVE A FOOTBALL TEAM
HE’S GOT SOME MONEY AND HE’S GOT BILLY JONES
HE’S GOT BILLY JONES
NYRON AT THE BACK
STEPHEN ELLIOT IN ATTACK
ROY KEANE HE’S ON HIS WAY BACK
— Aurora Borealis (@SR5Paul) March 26, 2018
“clear ya desk ye Welsh fraud, Keano starts on Monday”
Niall Quinn – April 2018
— Wearsiders (@Sunderland1879) March 25, 2018
NIall Quinn almost runs SAFC into the ground as chairman – fails in all other business ventures and comes back to SAFC? If he’s just a contact middle man than no problem – but please god don’t give him any financial clout at the club! That would be the end of #SAFC
— Marcus Black (@marcusblackcat) March 26, 2018
Niall Quinn is rumoured to be in talks to take over Sunderland
Don’t play with my heart in such a way man, we can dream, right?
— Stephanie Wooton (@StephanieWooton) March 25, 2018
Wolves signing Miguel Veloso would reunite him with long-time partner Joao Moutinho
The Portuguese pair formed a formidable partnership for both club and country and could potentially do similar at Wolves.
Wolves are being linked with a move for free agent midfielder Miguel Veloso. TEAMtalk are suggesting that the newly-promoted side are looking to add the 56-cap Portugal international to their fold this week. He is a free agent having left Genoa and Everton are reportedly also keen.
It would be an interesting signing for Wolves and one which, on paper, certainly makes sense. Veloso is represented by the Jorge Mendes ran Gestifute company. He is also a player with an illustrious record, winning titles with Sporting and Dynamo Kiev.
At Sporting he was considered one of Portugal’s most promising young talents. He was not alone in that respect. He came through to the first-team picture in Lisbon at the same time as another central midfielder, one Wolves fans will know very well.
Both Veloso and Joao Moutinho came through at Sporting in 2005. The pair went on to form a formidable partnership in the heart of Sporting’s midfield for the next five years. In 2010, both men left. Veloso headed to Kiev, whilst Moutinho made a controversial switch to Porto.
Moutinho went on to establish a reputation as one of the more consistent central midfielders in Europe.
So this summer, when Wolves signed him for a bargain fee of just £5 million, it was an eye-catching piece of business.
If they could also secure Veloso, the pair might be able to rekindle some of their old magic at Molineux.
Bielsa’s Engine Room: Kalvin Phillips continues to thrive in new Leeds role
The 22-year-old came through the Elland Road academy system.
After Marco Bielsa’s Leeds United continued their impressing winning start to the season this weekend, recording a 2-1 victory over Rotherham, several players are being highlighted for praise.
Among those who deserve the majority share of the plaudits is 22-year-old Kalvin Phillips, who continues to thrive in the playing style implemented by the club’s new boss.
A player capable of keeping it simple at the base of the midfield, Phillips has proven to be astute defensively and comfortable in possession – key traits for a player to thrive in the Argentine’s system.
Against Rotherham on Saturday, he registered 112 touches, more than any other player on the pitch and a personal best for the club.
He also completed the most passes on the day (88), recorded more interceptions than anyone else (six) and created two chances, one of which went down as an assist.
Rotherham marked a third exceptional Championship performance of the season for the youngster, with his movement and distribution keeping the ball ticking over in central midfield.
The academy talent is proving himself to be a force in central midfield for the Whites, quickly establishing himself as the lynchpin of the Bielsa revolution at Elland Road.
If Phillips can maintain this level of performance he will be integral in the club’s promotion push throughout the remainder of the season.
One to Watch: Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish at his creative best vs Ipswich
The Villa youngster was exceptional again this weekend.
Jack Grealish again proved why he is Aston Villa’s most important player in their attempt to gain promotion back to the Premier League with an excellent performance in Villa’s 1-1 draw with Ipswich Town on Saturday.
The 22-year-old’s wonderful display was underpinned by the 28 passes he completed in the final third – which, according to WhoScored was more than any other player had managed in a single Championship game thus far this season.
Grealish also completed five key passes in the game, bringing his season total to 11 – more than any other player in the league other than Norwich’s Ben Marshall (also 11).
Furthermore, the Englishman completed five of his six dribbles in the game.
Steve Bruce spoke glowingly of Grealish this week on TalkSport.
“He’s arguably the best young player I’ve had in terms of ability. He can do something where he can lift you off your seat, he’s such a natural footballer and of course he’s grown up a bit,” the Aston Villa manager said.
“For me, he’s going to be a top, top player.”
It is hard not to agree with Bruce. Not only does it appear as though Grealish has matured greatly in the last 12 months, his performances since the turn of the year have been astounding – he has arguably been the division’s best player in that period.
His constant menacing against Ipswich was no different – he has started this season brightly.
If he can manage to help guide Villa to the Premier League, he may be there for the long-term.
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