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Time for Sunderland to make before the break

If Big Sam is to be believed that we have to win our home games if we are to get out of the mire we find ourselves in.

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Article by Jon Guy

It is a tough two weeks for me as I was in Singapore to watch the debacle at Goodison and am currently in the football-mad emirate of Dubai where there are no shortages of venues to see the game tomorrow, but I feel rather disembodied from the game, banter and build up.

The big question Sam is how does he fit Jermaine Defoe into his system. Defoe looked classy on Sunday and scored a great goal and he also gave Sunderland a lift when he came on midway through the first half against Newcastle.

The manager has made it clear if he goes for a four man midfield it leaves the side vulnerable and didn’t it show against Everton.

The biggest worry was that at least two of the goals Everton scored came directly when we lost possession on the edge of the Everton box.

Talk has been that Jack Rodwell will move into the centre half position and that might not be a bad move. He has the physicality and if we had someone who could move the ball well out of the back it may well add a new dimension and options to the team.

Whatever the team the fact is we will need to move the quality of our performance up a fair few notches if we are to have any chance of securing three points.

You have to take your hat off to Southampton in the way they have built the side over the past 18 months following the huge exodus they saw of several “star” performers.

They look solid at the back hardworking in midfield and have a strike force that is amongst the goals.

Having said that what frustrates the fans and should encourage us in equal measure is that we do have a decent looking squad on paper but it is getting them to perform as a unit that is the major problem.

Big Sam wants the fans to be the 12th man at the SoL but to be that man we need to have something positive to cheer about.

The other issue is that while the manger might welcome the chance to have a break and work with the players absent those who will be on international duty, the importance of heading into the break with a decent result cannot be under-estimated.

A trip to Crystal Palace is up next and while we picked up three points at Selhurst Park last season but it will be a tough game against a side which has seen mixed fortunes but on its day is a match for anyone.

We need to start gathering some momentum sooner another than later. I have no doubt that Sam will be active come the January window but we need to be in a position where prospective acquisitions see some attraction to joining the club, otherwise we will see the familiar pictures of players we have been heavily linked with signing elsewhere.

No score predictions this week but trust me if we get a result there will be one very happy Mackem in Dubai.

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