Once again we crown a Player Of The Month, and this month has been one of the toughest so far with four main contenders, and the top six separated by less than one point differential.
The ultimate winner is however Ki Sung-Yeung, who takes the crown for the second time this season.
There were some top performances from Vito Mannone in there to push him, while John O'Shea's consistency also put him among things. Some will complain about it not being Adam Johnson, but his late charge was somewhat negated by poor performances (as with most) against Villa and Norwich early on.
(Note: Another reminder that our 'months' are counted since the first game of the season, not calendar months)
Now to see what some other writers had to say on our top man this month, Kiiiiiiiiiii...
Michael Graham: You just have to love Ki, right? I think it's law or something. It is no exaggeration to say that the on-loan Swansea man has been an absolute revelation on Wearside this summer. He is a wonderful footballer to watch and his consistency is excellent too.
With Sunderland, you try not to get too attached to loaned players as we seldom see them again, but it would break my heart now to see Ki playing for someone else. Just sign the bugger!
Craig Clark: Gus Poyet has done an incredible job getting a number of Sunderland players passing and moving in a way that would have been unimaginable 12 months ago. Ki, however, was made for the Uruguayan's system. Poyet may not have signed the South Korean maestro but he is the one man in the squad who truly epitomises his philosophy.
Even when he's below par, he makes things tick in a way that any of the other midfield options could only dream of when on top of their game. He's surely a shoe in for player of the season; here's hoping he's still here next term.
Nick Holden: I could try and come up with a reasoned paragraph on why Ki is our player of the month, but to be honest (and it's probably doing him a disservice as it's far from the only great thing he's done recently) all I can really do is watch that pass over and over and whilst my hand creeps lower and lower and an involuntary groan escapes. Soz.
Stephen Goldsmith: Absolutely no exaggeration to say that, on the pitch anyway, he's potentially been the saviour of our season. Putting the resounding win at Fulham (and the subsequent elation) to one side, we've one of the poorest midfield pools in the Premier League. Ki has been pivotal to Poyet's style of play and without him I just couldn't see it being anywhere near as effective as it currently is. Hopefully we'll add to it and it'll continue to improve, that's the hope I carry with me.
Gareth Barker: I've watched his ball for the 3rd goal against Fulham over and over again. I still can't compute it. Ki's brain must be built like a computer, his passing ability should be documented in the finest trigonometry textbooks. This is a guy who came in instead of Huddlestone. In hindsight, you have to wonder why he wasn't top of the list.
Having added goals to his game, he's becoming the complete Premier League midfielder. I'm delighted to bow to 'The Sensei'.
David Boyle: Ki is the very epitome of what can be exciting and exhilarating about good attacking midfield play, the lad looks to have the lot and if Swansea seem so keen to offload him either now or in the summer their loss will be our huge gain.
It has been said time and time again but Ki really is the fulcrum around which Gus Poyet's side revolves and I dread to think where we would be without his services. Sign him up ASAP and build a side around the Korean, we finally have a talent available with which we would be in a position to do so.
And how did everyone else get on this month? Well take a look below...
|Player Name||Average Score||
|El Hadji Ba||7.0||N/A||7|
It was a good month for Sunderland, and that seems to be reflected across the board. A delight to see the likes of Adam Johnson up their game considerably, but there's room for improvement with our strikers and notably Emanuele Giaccherini.
You can't have everything though, and we can excuse it somewhat with the vast majority of players upping their game.