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Roker Roundup: Ex-Sunderland striker McCoist thinks we can make the Championship Playoffs!

Could another trip to Wembley be on the cards? Former Sunderland striker Ally McCoist can’t see any reason why the Lads can’t make the playoffs this season…

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No reason Sunderland can’t get into play-offs

Although Sunderland lost 2-0 to Blackburn Rovers on Tuesday night, not helped by some very poor officiating, ex-Sunderland striker Ally McCoist still believes the club will get into the play-offs.

Speaking to Grosvenor Sport, McCoist said he was very happy with the appointment of Tony Mowbray, despite being disappointed over Alex Neil’s departure.

McCoist pointed to how little there is to choose between most teams in the Championship this season and says he has seen enough to tip Mowbray’s men for a run at the play-offs:

Do you know something, you see that league, I love it! I can’t tell you how much I love the Championship and I think there’s absolutely no reason why Sunderland can’t get into the playoff places.

I was looking for a bit of stability from Sunderland this season but I like Tony Mowbray, he’s a safe pair of hands and knows the management game inside out. I was a little disappointed that Alex Neil left so quickly to be honest but at the same time, I think Sunderland’s replacement was a very, very good choice.

I’m a Sunderland man as you know and I’ve seen enough from this team to know that they can sneak into the playoff places. I look at the teams above and you’ve got Swansea, Luton and Reading, who have had a great start by the way, with Incey and Alex Rae - other than that, there’s not much difference between the sides in the Championship. All Sunderland need is one strong run of five or six games unbeaten and they’ll be able to consolidate themselves in the playoffs.

Celtic v Rangers Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Toivonen announces his retirement

Following hot on the heels of Seb Larsson announcing his retirement, his former Sweden and Sunderland team-mate Ola Toivonen has followed suit and decided to hang up his boots.

Currently appearing for FC Malmo in the Allsvenskan, Toivonen has been a bit part player this season with his and the team’s performances being below par.

After recovering from a knee injury, Toivonen had hoped to continue playing with his motivation still high but told Malmo’s official website that his body can’t keep up:

I feel that the time is now. The motivation is there, but the body doesn’t quite keep up. I got a serious injury, fought through it and didn’t have high expectations, but it almost went better than expected when I came back. Then there was hope that it would continue in the autumn, but the results and playing time have been too bad from both the team and me.

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

Diakite signs for Roma

Former Sunderland defender Modibo Diakite has signed for Roma, however unfortunately for the French defender he won’t be teaming up with Jose Mourinho as he has signed for Serie D outfit Roma City.

The 35-year-old has signed for the newly formed amateur club after a four-year spell at Ternana and has already made his debut, in a 2-1 home defeat to FC Matese.

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