Well, that didn’t go too badly did it?
In keeping with former players doing pretty well at CAFC managers Johnnie is off to a good start. That showing suggests that Jackson and Euell weren’t part of the problem.
How on earth did he do that? Well, as Bowyer always says football’s a simple game. Jackson avoided overloading the players with info and filling their heads with mush.
One suspects the players appreciated this clear approach as it would seem to be in contrast with Adkins messages which clearly didn’t get understood.
My desire pre-match was for a performance never mind the result. We needed to see if this group of players have the hunger and desire to play for Jackson and the club. Based on Saturday’s display the answer at present is a resounding yes.
Opting for what appears to be a slightly fluid 1-3-5-2 (never understood why keeper gets left out of formations!) we apparently looked more solid defensively. We weren’t so exposed down the flanks where our full backs have been tragically exposed by a lack of protection and support from whoever was in front of them.
Playing the two up front was equally important. It was clear weeks ago that one up front doesn’t work with the players we have nor the system we were trying to implement it with.
Johnnie was able to re-ignite the passion within the team and they were more hungry and up for it than probably at any time this season.
One hopes that this is the start of a good run. I still feel it’s too late for us to get into the play-offs but the team has to give it a go no matter how improbable that seems.
Post-match and the odious Lee Johnson was as gracious in defeat as ever. The claim that Stockley delivered a head-butt on Flanagan is ludicrous. Sadly, Clinton Morrison on Quest foolishly agreed. Poor Clinton had the benefit of seeing the video and that makes his comments even more laughable.
A number of Sunderland fans are of the view that in no way was that a head-butt. Anyway we’ll leave Johnson to wallow in his own misery.
For now we can celebrate a great start to Jackson’s tenure as manager. Long may it continue and move to a permanent role asap.
Now I can look forward to Saturday’s trip to The Valley with more excitement and passion than at any time this season.