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Diary of a Sunderland fan: #27 - Please Simon, give us something, anything, to cling to

I’d honestly love for Simon Grayson to turn this mess around, but can anyone really say with any conviction that they believe that he will?

Brentford.... right, cool. Does it really matter any more who we’re playing in the next game? I think I’m passed caring now, about who we play.

I’ll still watch, of course, but we could be facing anyone this weekend - I’m really not that arsed who, because in truth there are no outstanding teams at this level. At least when we were in the Premier League you knew exactly what you were up against.

These teams all just blend in to one - squads of players that I’ve never heard of that come along and, to varying degrees, take the p*ss out of us before leaving us to pick over the mess left behind. That is what supporting Sunderland AFC in the Championship has become - a chore; a bore.

I’m genuinely unsure as to where this goes from here. One glance at our squad should perhaps tell us that we should have just enough in our ranks to pull away from this mess, but then our form doesn’t lie, and you can’t just rely on ‘big’ names to win you games because, like we’ve seen this season, reputation counts for very little in this unforgiving division.

Sunderland v Derby County - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Simon Grayson doesn’t feel like a man on borrowed time, and that concerns me. You do have to wonder what the thinking is behind placing so much faith in this man who is clearly out of his depth - and it simply can’t just be a matter of loyalty.

Can we even afford to sack him?

I’m going to guess not, unless Ellis digs deep again.

And if he does, it’ll be done reluctantly. If we can’t win two of the next three games - one of which is against basement-side Bolton - Mr Short might just have to rummage his hand around down the back of his throne at Skibo Castle in order to find a few quid, because the failure to beat a side below us in the table should, in my eyes and in the eyes of many other supporters, be the final straw for the current inhabitant of the Sunderland hotseat.

I wrote before the QPR game about the result being potentially season-defining, and as I sit here now it kinda feels as though it actually was. I thought that we had to win, we didn’t, and that felt poignant. We’re now over a quarter of the way through the season and we’re second bottom of the division, with a game against a side just four points ahead of us in the table next up. If we really are in a relegation battle - and I do believe that we are - then these are the games that we simply have to win, against the other poor sides around us.

It might not seem the case but I genuinely hope that Grayson can turn this around. I’m sick of seeing us lose, I’m sick of the negativity and the crap football - if winning this week sets us back on a path towards consistency then great, I’m all for it. I’m worn down by the constant churn of managers and players, and I crave stability. But please, Simon, give us something - anything - to cling to.

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