Going into this season as a Sunderland supporter we knew what we were getting into. We knew the backroom staff was experiencing an overhaul and the way we did things at this club was changing entirely. We knew we had nearly a whole new lineup of players because of the clear out and wage cutting. We knew we were facing one of the toughest beginnings to a premier league season that anyone could ask for, home games against the likes of Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester city, Chelsea, and Tottenham, with the truly winnable games aside from Fulham and Newcastle seeming to all be away days.
It was always going to be tough getting a brand new team to come together and play anything resembling cohesive football in the first two months of the season. We saw this, when the opportunities to pick up points in the early season games against Fulham, Crystal Palace and Arsenal, were squandered by individual errors, referee decisions, and sheer bad luck. Taking an honest look at the season up to this point, the amount of points we would hope to see in a best case scenario would be only around 8 points. That best case scenario being we didn't just have our entire team remodeled and a head coach dealing with a player uprising from his iron fist tactics.
The light at the end of this dark tunnel comes in the form of Christmas. The jam packed holiday premier league fixture list for SAFC presents itself as an overstuffed Christmas stocking hanging over the fireplace. In the place of toys and trinkets we are presented good opportunities for points and dragging ourselves out of the league cellar. The period between December 14th and February 8th are going to be the most pivotal two months for the club, since we returned to the premier league in 2007.
This is why it will be very important for the club to decide soon on which route it wishes to take in regards to a new manager because we cannot afford to experience any form of transition after December 1st. If we are going to stick with Kevin Ball I'm alright with that, but if the club feels that we need to go in a different direction, we need to move in that direction immediately. Any new Manager is going to need time to feel his team out before he gets it right and we only have 2 months before this team needs to be running on all cylinders.