The Daily Mail have filled this week's domestic footballing void by running down the 100 worst Premier League strikers of all time.
Nine front men to who have turned out in red-and-white made the list of goalless infamy, but who really was the most dreadful to have been seen on Wearside?
Cast your vote below for the ultimate worst Premier League striker to play for Sunderland. Here’s the Mail’s rundown and their ranking of the Black Cats from which to select.
#91 - Jonathan Stead
Stead scored two goals in thirty-five appearances for Sunderland, the first coming some ten months after he first signed in a £1.8m deal from Blackburn.
Part of the record-setting 15-point side who can lay claim to being the worst ever seen on Wearside, the 6ft 3in striker was shunted on to Derby on loan early the following season.
#86 - Kevin Kyle
Kyle was understudy to Niall Quinn for several years, but he ended up as joint top goalscorer in 2004 with 16 goals in all competitions to help Mick McCarthy’s side in to the Championship play-offs and an FA Cup semi-final.
Another member of the 15-point 2005-6 Premier League relegation squad, Kyle also holds the distinction of turning out for the team who were demoted with nineteen in 2003.
#82 - Milton Nunez
The stuff of legend, Nunez only ever made one league appearance for Sunderland. The widely accepted theory that Peter Reid signed the wrong man has gone down in Wearside folklore.
Standing at 5ft 5in, the Honduran’s introduction to the crowd at the Stadium of Light included a mini lap of the pitch to herald his arrival whilst performing a shadow-boxing routine that would only enhance his nickname of Tyson.
#81 - Lilian Laslandes
Landing in the summer of 2001, Laslandes had been prolific in France and his capture for £3.6m by Peter Reid was considered something of a coup.
Twelve appearances followed with no goals and the striker’s relationship with the gaffer who signed him quickly broke down. Loaned out to German side Koln the following January, Laslandes failed to score in five Bundesliga games before moving on to Bastia for a term.
Arriving back on Wearside for pre-season training in 2003, Sunderland were unable to secure a fee for Laslandes from interested parties and he was released to free up his wages.
Speaking in his newly released book “Cheer Up, Peter Reid”, the former Sunderland manager speaks briefly about signing Laslandes and how, in hindsight, it was a huge mistake:
I made some mistakes with the funds that were made available. Bringing in Lilian Laslandes for £3.6m rebounded on me when he failed to score in 12 league appearances.
Signing him was a mistake but when I’d seen him play for Bordeaux against the likes of Lille, Man United and Celtic, he had done really well, and looked a safe bet. He might have had marital problems by the time he joined us and he was a disaster. I knew him as a footballer, but I didn’t know much about him as a character.
#71 - Michael Chopra
The Newcastle academy product infamously arrived at newly-promoted Sunderland in a £5m deal in 2007. Chopra had made 21 appearances for the Mags but never quite made the grade on Tyneside.
Successful spells at Barnsley and Cardiff followed which persuaded Roy Keane to part with £5m for the then-23 year old.
Chopra’s links to Newcastle tainted his spell on Wearside and the curtain came down with his last game for Sunderland including ‘that’ chance he appeared to spurn which would have won the Tyne-Wear derby of 2009. He scored 8 goals in thirty-nine outings for Sunderland.
#53 - David Healy
Healy joined Sunderland in 2008 on a three-year contract for a fee believed to be worth £1.2 million. Instantly forgettable, the Northern Irish international went 10 months without featuring in the first team.
The then-29 year old had got off to a good start with a goal on his debut in the League Cup but the strikes soon became infrequent and he moved to Ipswich on loan in February 2010 along with Daryl Murphy.
#25 - David Bellion
Bought from Cannes as an 18-year-old, Bellion only managed 1 senior league goal in twenty games for Sunderland before he rejected a new deal in order to move on to Manchester United. Amidst allegations of “tapping up” over the move, the Red Devils paid £2m in an out-of-court settlement.
Bellion never made much of himself at Old Trafford either and left England in 2006 for spells with Nice and Bordeaux.
#6 - Victor Anichebe
Anichebe’s inclusion by the Mail reflects his 27 goals in twelve years in the Premier League at Everton, West Brom and Sunderland.
After signing on a free in 2016, Big Vic proved an instant hit on Wearside as he inspired David Moyes’ side to a brief upswing in fortune, with three goals in his first two starts.
From there, the fitness issues which had blighted his career returned and the goals dried up. Anichebe moved on to China after Sunderland’s relegation.
#1 - Jozy Altidore
Jozy Altidore played 70 Premier League games for Hull and Sunderland. He scored a grand total of two Premier League goals.
Sunderland, managed by Paolo Di Canio, spent £6m on the US international in 2013 and he repaid that investment with one strike in 42 league games.
Clumsy and wildly inaccurate, Jozy’s misses for Sunderland have become viral YouTube sensations. He eventually left in the ‘deal of the decade’ as Toronto agreed to swap him for Jermain Defo.
Jozy left the Premier League with a strike rate of a goal every 35 games. He has scored at a ratio of a goal every other game since returning to the MLS but gaining the gong of ‘worst ever’ from a national newspaper is an extraordinary achievement.
Who is Sunderland’s worst striker of the Premier League Era? Vote now!
Sunderland’s worst striker of the Premier League era
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