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Poyet Needs To Win Games, Not Arguments

Gus Poyet is under pressure, fans are furious and journalists feel under attack, but winning arguments won't solve Sunderland's ills, winning games will.

Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

I never quite got the hang of outrage. I've always found it to be a far more entertaining spectator sport than a participatory one.

With that in mind, the fall out to Sunderland's meek FA Cup exit at Bradford has been as fascinating to watch as the game itself was painful.

When I say 'outrage', I don't mean it as a derogatory, patronising term either. I can absolutely see where it is coming from and it's completely fair. Results have been poor and performances, the Burnley game aside, have been grim.

On top of that, by Poyet's own admission it appears the team has stopped making progress, and the embarrassment factor has aggravated things further due to losing - comprehensively - to QPR and a League One team in less than a week.

It's all getting, and feeling, very personal now too, and that's never a calming influence on anything.

The fans have taken Poyet's comments about them personally, and the media have taken Poyet's comments on them personally. No matter what he says, it seems quite clear that Poyet is taking a lot of the criticisms personally too.

To be fair, there is a lot of justification in what Poyet says about the media. Dave Kidd of the Daily Mirror - a journalist with no real connection to Sunderland so far as I know - leapt to the defence of 'his colleagues' tweeting they are not 'to blame for [a manager's] team being a shambles.'

Fair enough, but Poyet never said they were. He said the media twisted his words, and in misrepresenting his sentiments to try and prove him wrong, Kidd succeeded only in demonstrating there was substance to the accusation, even if it was a little unfair to generalise so much.

The debate on words is little more than a mostly irrelevant sideshow anyway, even if everyone has a valid point and legitimate cause for complaint here somewhere along the line. It's wins, of lack of, not words that is driving the outrage and creating the narrative.

Should Poyet go? I very much doubt anyone cares about my opinion on that.

One thing I do know is that anger doesn't hold any solutions for Sunderland right now. It is calm, rational heads and analysis that is needed, not rushing off taking everything personally and turning everything into a quarrel.

It appears that over the last few weeks, everyone, Poyet included, has become a little preoccupied with winning arguments. I don't know much about running a football club, but focusing on winning games would probably solve all the problems and more that these needless arguments create.

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