Fresh back on these shores, we have, as promised a match report from the 3-1 defeat in Hameln provided by Mal Robinson, the Editor-In-Chief of topper SAFC Fanzine, Seventy3!
This should have been up shortly after the match but a collision with some German passengers on the train was Das Dizasterouz (or whatever the German is) and it was lost.
As it was once sung on the theme tune to TV's Record Breakers - "Dedication's what you need" - a mantra stuck with by Mal, and without any further rambling, I present to you the Seventy3 view on the game, and a look at the pre-season from a Seventy3 perspective...Pre-season tends to throw up the unlikeliest of opposition in the most bizarre of surroundings and Wednesday’s game proved no different. Perhaps the opponents in Germany’s fourth best team were fitting of the standards
Sunderland should be aspiring to play more often in Europe, however the setting of Hameln’s Weserbergland Stadion were quirky to say the least.
Sunderland playing Hannover in Hameln was the equivalent of Barcelona playing Lazio at Benidorm’s ground – still this was Germany and everything so it seemed was pretty much random, infact look up the word random in the dictionary and a picture of the German flag will accompany the meaning.
We arrived via Bremen the same day as the match, our journey concluding in Hameln via half of the south of the country, following a mishap with the train connections, arriving at the picturesque town of the rat catcher some two hours late, yet fours before kick off to sample the atmosphere with our fellow red and white family.
A pre match downpour meant a last minute taxi ride to the ground was required, Hameln’s finest athletics’ stadium having three sides uncovered, still on arrival the whole place was fervent with activity, both sets of fans giving a good account of themselves, not so hard for Hannover who play their football only an hour or
so away on the train.
The match itself was a non event, Sunderland still finding their feet, with new signing David Vaughan offering some neat touches and the Dong up front looking the part, showing willing and looking remarkably tall for a South Korean!
The game came alive with two minutes for the Sunderland defence to forget, the first goal of the game being a moment to forget for visiting keeper – Simon Mignolet – rushing out of his area only for a cheeky German forward to nip in and slot home for the would be hosts. It was time for a toilet break for myself and so it seemed a break too for the Sunderland rearguard, letting in a second goal in as many minutes. 2-0 then to ze Germans.
As fans mixed with each other and the police both military and civilian, the game descended into a plethora of substitutions stifling the play. Sessegnon did pull a goal back for the lads, although this brought about false hopes of a draw as Hannover restored their two-goal margin six minutes from time in which the 3-1 score line remained.
The biggest winner though were the fans bonding well and hoping to see each other in some form of competitive football in the future.
Hannover 96 3 Sunderland AFC 1
Man of the match: Eric Black for taking a copy of Seventy3 magazine and exchanging plenty of good craic!
Sunderland: Mignolet, Bardsley (Larsson, 65), Richardson, Ferdinand, Laing, Elmohamady, Vaughan, Colback, Gardner (Cattermole, 65), Sessegnon (Malbranque, 70), Dong-Won (Wickham, 70).
Subs: Pickford, Tounkara.
Hannover: Zieler (Miller, 46), Eggimann (Pander, 62), Haggui (Avevor, 77), Pogatetz (Akdari, 77), Schulz, Schmiedebach (Plaschke, 88), Hauger (Chahed, 62), Stoppelkamp (Stindl, 62), Schlaudraff, Rausch (Lala, 62), Abdelleoue (Aycicek, 73).
Subs: All Used.
And if you want to be as cool as Eric Black (and lets face it who doesn't) then get yourself on over to the Seventy3 Website now and subscribe. It's outrageously cheap for fantastic prublication it is. You'd have to be a right fool to miss out. Get over now.