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Moyes 'unhappy at FA chief's criticism'; Arsenal date set to be confirmed today & 2 more talking points

In this morning's news update: David Moyes and Sunderland have been allowed additional time to respond to the FA's enquiry about his comments to a BBC reporter as a direct result of criticism received by the chairman of the game's governing body; the date for our trip to Arsenal is set to be confirmed today; a 15-pointer signs up with an MLS outfit & 19-year-old defender Michael Ledger scores an own goal in his second league appearance.

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Moyes given more time due to FA chief's comment

According to the Telegraph, David Moyes and Sunderland have been allowed an additional three days to respond to the FA's enquiry about his unpleasant comments to a BBC reporter because of the criticism levelled at him by the chairman of football's governing body Greg Clarke.

Sunderland v Burnley - Premier League Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images

The report suggests that the club and their manager have been angered by Clarke's comments before they had been given the chance to respond formally to the FA.

UEFA EURO 2020 Launch Event
FA Chairman Greg Clarke
Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images

The Telegraph further suggest that Moyes will express his dismay in writing that the head of the FA expressed his view outside of, and prior to, any disciplinary procedure.

Asked about Moyes' behaviour Clarke said,

It was regrettable, it was distasteful and I think it showed a complete lack of respect, and we in the game stand for respect.

And when asked if the remarks by the Sunderland manager were sexist, the FA chairman added:

It could have been interpreted as such. I think it's doubly bad to use such a term to a woman because there is a lot of violence against women in society and terms like that aren't just disrespectful, I think they are bad examples. I regret that it happened and I'm sure that David Moyes regrets that it happened.

Moyes has expressed his regret and is understood to have been badly stung by the incident, though in the aftermath of defeat at Leicester, he did appear to suggest he couldn't understand the intensity of the furore surrounding his behaviour,

I’ve been surprised in many ways, I think the world of football is a great business now. I think it employs an incredible amount of people, whether it be through the media or in the training grounds. And for that reason, football’s a big talking point.

Arsenal date

It was supposed to take place at the end of this month but Sunderland's trip to the Emirates was postponed some weeks ago as Arsenal progressed to the semi-finals of the FA Cup.

Sunderland v Arsenal - Premier League
Arsene Wenger and David Moyes faced each other in October at the Stadium of Light
Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

The mood amongst Sunderland supporters right now might not be fussed on even bothering with the game such is the dismal prospect of any sudden launch of a relegation fight. And after they destroyed us with ease at the Stadium of Light earlier in the season, another game with Arsenal hardly heralds much anticipation.

But the confirmation of the date on which it will actually be played may arrive later on today. There's only really one week in which it can be played - the final one of the season.

It's set to be finally announced today for the 16th or 17th May. Yippee.

Former defender joins MLS outfit

Justin Hoyte, who spent a season on loan at Sunderland over a decade ago, has signed for MLS side FC Cincinnati.

Sunderland v Middlesbrough
Justin Hoyte playing for Sunderland against Middlesbrough
Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

Now aged 32, the defender who played 27 games during the Black Cats infamous 15-point relegation season, had been playing in the National League with Daggenham and Redbridge most recently.

Cincinnatic coach Alan Koch said of his signing,

Justin’s personality and humbleness for someone who has already achieved a significant amount in the game is enriching for our group. Our younger players can use him as a mentor as they grow their careers. I also know that Justin is incredibly motivated to be successful here in North America and I look forward to working with him. He is a versatile defender and will compete for a starting position in our team immediately.

Hoyte is best remembered on Wearside for scoring against Newcastle in the 2006 Tyne-Wear derby and for being 'clattered' by a Mackem pitch invader six years later during an FA Cup replay between Sunderland and Middlesbrough.

Praise followed by horror for Ledger

We've been following the progress of Michael Ledger quite closely - mainly because it's a pleasant break from the general misery of following Sunderland in the Premier League.

Credit: dagsavisen

The 19-year-old defender, on loan at Norwegian Eliteserien club Viking Stavanger made his senior league debut earlier in the week and was in action again yesterday.

And despite his side losing their opening game of the season, the Sunderland centre-half received praise in the Scandinavian press with one newspaper columnist expressing his delight at how the youngster had settled into the Norwegian top-flight,

It is impressive to see the 19-year-old Ledger. This is a player who has not played a single game for Sunderland at such a level - it is almost scary how quickly he has taken to the level of the Eliteserien. On the whole he is very solid.

It wasn't quite so positive last night however, as Ledger turned the ball into his own net after just six minutes of Viking's second defeat of the league campaign against Tromso.

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