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Roker Report Draft: Creating Sunderland’s worst-ever starting XI: Vote for your winner!

Our terrible teams have now been assembled, but who would you say has chosen the most hapless, hopeless Sunderland XI of them all? Vote in the poll at the top of the article!

Photo by Kieran Galvin/NurPhoto via Getty Images


Which XI gets your vote?

This poll is closed

  • 20%
    Gav’s team
    (93 votes)
  • 12%
    Matty’s team
    (55 votes)
  • 8%
    Jack’s team
    (39 votes)
  • 7%
    Malc’s team
    (36 votes)
  • 18%
    Phil’s team
    (84 votes)
  • 32%
    Martin’s team
    (150 votes)
457 votes total Vote Now

Gav says...

Led by Phil Parkinson, this pathetically assembled group WILL play five at the back, and WILL NOT feature any flair. Bad news, McGeady fans.

My back five is an absolute disaster.

Can you imagine how many goals they’d concede?!

Callum McFadzean is still fresh in the memory and, to my mind, he’s the worst player I’ve ever seen in a Sunderland shirt.

Then there’s the front three: Nunez. Stead. Angell.

Does it get any worse?

Vote for my team. You know it makes sense.

Gav’s XI: Robbin Ruiter, Donald Love, Gareth Hall, Jack Baldwin, Papy Djilobodji, Callum McFadzean, Christian Bassila, George Dobson, Milton Nunez, Jon Stead, Brett Angell. Manager: Phil Parkinson

Soccer - FA Carling Premiership - Sunderland v Bradford City Photo by John Walton/EMPICS via Getty Images

Matthew Crichton says...

So why should my team win? Let me tell you...

First and foremost, my manager Simon Grayson took a side relegated from the Premier League and took them to the relegation places of the Championship. Enough said on that.

In goal we have a “goalkeeper” in Remi Matthews who struggles with basic handling, a centre forward who follows in’s dream.

My defence possesses two left-backs in Dan Smith and Laurens De Bock, who are easily forgettable through how bad they were and how little they featured. Combine that with the sheer pace of Glenn Loovens and the nailed-on red card with Jake Clarke-Salter - this back five would be a walking nightmare!

On the flanks, I have two youngsters who failed to meet the hype and were both huge wastes of money in Charis Mavrias and David Moberg-Karlsson. They would get easily get a game for Sunderland now, but put your Premier League head back on when judging duo!

Centrally you have the biggest Barcelona letdown in Arnau and the one appearance wonder Cabral, in six years with Sunderland combined these two made TWO league appearances! Shocking!

Lastly, we have two forwards who NEVER scored for Sunderland despite the club paying transfer fees for both - Nacho Scocco and Roy O’Donovan. Two Premier League signings who flopped and ended up moving back to worse levels of football.

Not a single player in this team scored a league goal for Sunderland... let that sink in.

Matty’s XI: Remi Matthews, Dan Smith, Jake Clarke-Salter, Glenn Loovens, Laurens De Bock; David Moberg-Karlsson, Arnau, Cabral, Charis Mavrias, Nacho Scocco, Roy O’Donovan. Manager: Simon Grayson

Sunderland Unveil New Signing Laurens De Bock Photo by Sunderland AFC/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Jack Howe-Gingell says…

First and foremost, disregarding the ability of the team chosen, they would be managed by David Moyes. Based upon his spell here, an already desperate group of players would be demotivated and uninspired. A recipe for disaster. He’d probably have McFadden as captain and a bench full of Everton has-beens to call upon as well, which fills me with dread.

Secondly, that is likely the slowest backline anyone has ever seen. I would happily back an army of tortoises to out-pace that defence, and in truth, they’d probably get a penalty with that horrifying pairing at centre back. Plus any shot on target would be hoyed in by the flappable Michael Ingham.

Thirdly, the midfield is complete uninspiring and bereft of anything exciting. Gravy trainers Toivonen and McFadden would likely just plod about offering as much as someone sitting in the stands (probably less so), with Whitley and Welsh adding a nice sprinkle of headless chicken, quality stricken play.

Fourthly, and finally, just look at that strike pairing. It is an aberration to the eyes and an invasion of the mind. It barely needs explaining but all of the following apply: couldn’t hit a cow’s arse with a banjo; couldn’t hit a barn door; couldn’t kick my arse with either foot. No one would ever score with this pairing, not even Ryhope CW.

Overall, looking at this team, it is bereft of pace and quality, would leak goals, no midfield control and two donkeys up top. Add that bin juice to the lifeless Moyes and you have a recipe for the worst team ever.

Jack’s XI: Michael Ingham, Greg Halford, Paul McShane, Russell Anderson, Robbie Elliott, James McFadden, Ola Toivonen, Jeff Whitley, Andy Welsh, Benjani, Jerome Sinclair. Manager: David Moyes

Sunderland v West Ham United,Barclays Premier League

Malc Dugdale says…

After completing the selection process, a lot of the RR lads suggested my eleven may actually win a competition between all the worst 11 selection groups. They assume Lee Camp can save a shot from any of the opponent players in this situation, which of course is rubbish and totally impossible. The better options in other areas of the team don’t mean my team is any less worthy of votes.

Terry Butcher could no doubt make as much chaos with this lot as he did when he picked up as caretaker manager for the second time. He was clueless and a major disappointment in comparison to his playing career, and his achievements later in Scotland. This is a core theme for my team.

With such (a lack of) quality from back to front as Lee Camp, Phil Babb, Darron Gibson, Didier NDong, Jozy Altidore, Dame NDoye and Will Grigg, we have an end to end sequence of ne’er do wells who have in some places done okay, but for SAFC have just been a waste of money, for us and everyone involved in the region.

My team may not be the out and out worst footballers in this weird competition, but they are in many ways the biggest set of total flops we could ever assemble. These are the very type of player I want to see the new data and analysis-based models avoid at SAFC, for the rest of my mortal days.

I’m fed up with being the laughing stock team in the top 2 divisions, as we sign all the dross based on rumour and rubbish. If it isn’t that, we sign all the bad attitude nobbers on good contracts (for them) feeling they have lots of capability, but not knowing there is enough lack of interest to make stashing your cash under the bed a great idea again.

Vote team Malc. Will Grigg is officially not on fire, but this team sheet certainly should be, and if anyone can butcher a managerial role, Terry can.

Malc’s XI: Lee Camp, Jason Denayer, Phil Babb, Valentine Roberge, Jeremain Lens, Darron Gibson, Didier Ndong, Alvarez, Will Grigg, Jozy Altidore, Dame N’Doye. Manager: Terry Butcher

Sunderland Training Session Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Phil Butler says...

The simple reason why my team should win is because it's absolutely hopeless, even if that is kind of the point of this entire exercise.

To start in goal, Jason Steele is probably the worst type of goalkeeper for defenders to play in front of. Clearly, the lad could be a decent shot-stopper at times, but he always had a pretty shocking and game-changing mistake in him.

Add to this a defence consisting of a bloke who couldn't kick a moving ball (Angeleri), a walking red card (Dossena), and two of the slowest and clumsiest centreback partnership ever to play in red and white (Lescott and Kyrgiakos). This team is shipping at least 2 or 3 goals in each game.

The midfield is probably the strongest part of the side since baring a couple of exceptions Sunderland's recent players in this position have been one-paced and disappointing rather than completely hopeless. However, I'm pretty content that whilst each player could be decent on their day, those days didn't come around very often and therefore my midfield of McManaman, Bridcutt, Pienaar, and Buckley will be anonymous and disappointing 9 times out of 10.

Upfront, I'm confident that I've bagged our worst ever striker in Danny Graham who couldn't hit a barn door with a banjo in either spell at the club and along with the headless chicken Kaz Sterling even my defenders would stand a chance of keeping a clean sheet

If you're not sure whether to vote for Phil's team, just remember how angry the names of Howard Wilkinson, Jason Steele, and Danny Graham make you.

Phil’s XI: Jason Steele; Marcos Angeleri, Sotirios Kyrgiakos, Joleon Lescott, Andrea Dossena; Callum McManaman, Liam Bridcutt, Steven Pienaar, Will Buckley; Kaz Sterling, Danny Graham. Manager: Howard Wilkinson

Howard Wilkinson

Martin Wanless says...

To me, ‘worst’ can be interpreted in a number of ways. Obviously, you’ve got the general playing – or managerial – ability to consider. But then you’ve got all sorts of other things. The negative impact on a club, the disdain certain people have treated us with... Some of the other lads have picked some players who barely played, others have gone for players who were actually half decent but who either weren’t fashionable or we paid over the odds for, which isn’t their fault.

During our ‘draft’ I didn’t lose out on a player that I wanted – even Danny Graham tried... This is my first choice worst ever SAFC team.

My team’s managed by the man who established new lows for Sunderland Association Football Club: Lawrie McMenemy - a chap who was the highest-paid manager IN THE COUNTRY and took us into the third division for the first-ever time in our history. I’d argue if McMenemny hadn’t done that more than three decades earlier, the uproar would have been far greater three years ago.

In goal, Kelvin Davis. We’ve had some bad keepers, but this fella was beyond abysmal – the fact he replaced Poom and Mhyre making it all the worse.

At the back, I’ve gone for Mark Lynch – a competition winner if ever there was one – the despicable Alan Stubbs, the hapless Marc Wilson and the horrific Brendan Galloway.

Put that back five together and you’re conceding a ton, and none of them would care less.

My midfield linchpin is of course Jack Rodwell – who else. A worst-ever Sunderland team simply wouldn’t be complete with him in it. Tommy Miller – a huge letdown when he finally arrived at the Stadium of Light – partners the gutless wonder, and on the flanks are Anthony Le Tallec and Adnan Januzaj, two players who had little desire to be here, and showed even less heart and bottle.

The supply line to the front two wouldn’t be great, but you could have the world’s best supply line to these clowns and they still wouldn’t score. Yep, Andy Gray and James Vaughan. To be fair to Andy Gray, he’s probably a decent lad, he just was a horrendous player – he was out of his depth and played as if he knew it. James Vaughan on the other hand, treated the club with absolute contempt, was a god-awful player, and had some misguided notion that he was better than us. Absolute tossbucket.

Martin’s XI: Kelvin Davis, Mark Lynch, Alan Stubbs, Marc Wilson, Brendan Galloway, Anthony Le Tallec, Jack Rodwell, Tommy Miller, Adnan Janazaj, James Vaughan, Andy Gray. Manager: Lawrie McMenemy


Soccer - FA Carling Premiership - Sunderland v Bradford City Photo by John Walton/EMPICS via Getty Images


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