The Worst Injury Record in The Premier League by Miles, But You Knew That
According to a report in today's Daily Mail, Sunderland have lost 1,000 days to injury this season, and have endured 46 separate lay-offs to players, making them by far the worst hit side in the Premier League.
And the news gets little better with David Moyes' next Premier League challenge being a trip to the Hawthorns to face Tony Pulis and his high-flying West Bromwich Albion side. Because, the Baggies have enjoyed the fewest lost days to injury this season - a mere 189.
Much has been made of David Moyes' reluctance to use the academy graduates and fringe players he has made up his bench with in recent games. And, stats like this go some way to vindicating the Sunderland manager's evident woes.
Senior first team players like Lee Cattermole and Jan Kirchhoff have been joined in the casualty ward by breakthrough players like Paddy McNair and Duncan Watmore; all pretty much out for the bulk of the season. But it's also the repeat nature of short term lay-offs which have culminated in the current crisis at the Stadium of Light.
Barring Jermain Defoe, there is barely a member of the squad who hasn't been ruled out of matches this season and the former England striker is the only Sunderland player not to have missed any top-flight games.
Moyes has insisted that it isn't his methods to blame for the continuing injury state-of-emergency, but the Sunderland boss has indicated he will take a leap of faith tonight in the FA Cup and include those fringe players he has so far been reluctant to use for the trip to Burnley.
Robbie Brady Set to be Auctioned to the Highest Bidder?
With Sunderland lodging an offer for Norwich City midfielder Robbie Brady on Friday, but news only emerging of the bid yesterday afternoon, a renewed sense of optimism has enveloped Wearside to lift some of the gloom caused by Saturday's dire defeat.
How likely the prospect that Brady will be unveiled in a red-and-white shirt any time soon is debatable. Norwich are thought to have already rejected a £10m bid from Crystal Palace and tonight's opponents, Burnley, are thought to be favourites to land the Republic of Ireland international.
Sean Dyche's outfit are said to have lodged a bid worth £13m - with a £10m cash payment rising with add-ons. According to the Mirror, Burnley remain in talks with Norwich to thrash out a deal.
Canaries boss, Alex Neil, has indicated his club are "nowhere near" agreeing a deal with anyone. The Republic of Ireland international is expected to play in the FA Cup at Carrow Road tomorrow, a clear indication no deal is imminent as the player will be cup-tied as a result. A bid of £15m would likely close the deal.
For one thing, perhaps the sheer volume of Premier League clubs - all with top managers - vying for Brady is some indication of his quality. But Norwich fans still point to his dwindling contribution this season in a yellow shirt.