clock menu more-arrow no yes


Each and every month BBC Newcastle's Sunderland match commentator Nick Barnes brings you his views and opinions right here on - don't miss it!

Barnesy’s Blog: So far, so good for Sunderland... even Benno has a smile on his face!

"The club is on the up. The mood is good. It’s been a long time coming but now it is good, let’s build for a brighter future" writes BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes.

Barnesy’s Blog: Reacting to Kristjaan Speakman’s interview & the state of Sunderland’s squad!

"It won’t happen overnight, but there are some blossoming signs, even if there are still areas of concern. However, with a club the size of Sunderland, that is unavoidable", writes BBC Newcastle’s SAFC match commentator Nick Barnes.

Nick Barnes: “I’m still boundless in my optimism for Sunderland’s promotion chances!”

"Before the Peterborough the match I was boundless in my optimism, and although it may fly in the face of the current mood, I still am" writes BBC’s Sunderland match commentator Nick Barnes in his latest Roker Report blog.

Barnesy’s Blog: Sunderland owner Kyril Louis-Dreyfus has transformed the mood on Wearside

"The team is thriving and Dreyfus, with an honest well-meaning letter to the fans, has reinvigorated the club with an air of quiet confidence" writes BBC’s Sunderland AFC match commentator, Nick Barnes.

Barnesy’s Blog: 2020 has reached a new nadir now the coronavirus is spiralling out of control

BBC Radio Newcastle’s Sunderland commentator Nick Barnes hasn’t had a Boxing Day off in almost three decades, but, with the pandemic threatening the future of the EFL once again, it’s not something he’s celebrating.

Barnesy’s Blog: “The season is underway... but not as we know it!”

In his latest blog for Roker Report, BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes discusses the beginning of a strange season, Sunderland’s decent start and the questions fans demanded he ask manager Phil Parkinson!

Barnesy’s Blog: “Sunderland have been handicapped by not having an out-and-out striker!”

In his latest Roker Report blog, BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes ponders the situation Sunderland find themselves in with their strikers, and whether Phil Parkinson will experiment with his forward line in a bid to win promotion.

Barnesy’s Blog: There’s a lot riding on Sunderland’s upcoming games; do they have what it takes?

"With the improved fitness levels and the lack of Trophy involvement (which may yet hamper Portsmouth) I don’t expect to see Sunderland fall away as they did last season" writes BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes.

Barnesy’s Blog: Why I believe Sunderland’s owners must sell up so that the club can prosper

"What is more important is to take the long view, and I believe the time is right for change if Sunderland AFC is to prosper and compete where it belongs" writes BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes, stating his case for why he believes the current owners need to sell up.

Barnesy’s Blog: “It hurts to hear the anger and frustrations of the Sunderland supporters”

I can’t remember a time in all the twenty-seven years I’ve been a commentator, at any club, when I’ve felt such a disconnect between the supporters, the club and the manager as there seems to be at the moment.

Barnesy’s Blog: Sunderland supporters just want their club back

"Sunderland’s supporters just want their football club back - back where it belongs, but at the moment wanting it back and getting it back seem to be two very separate longings" writes BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes.

Barnesy’s Blog: The club need to do more to take the pressure off Sunderland manager Jack Ross

"The club can play its part in changing the mood and the mind-set, but for that it needs strong leadership and the manager, whoever it may be, needs someone who can take those pressures off their shoulders" writes BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes in his latest monthly Roker Report blog.

Barnesy’s Blog: “Sunderland should re-think how they use Aiden McGeady - the team will benefit!”

"Not for one minute am I saying we don’t play with McGeady. Far from it. What I am saying is that Sunderland need to use him more intelligently" writes BBC Newcastle’s Sunderland match commentator Nick Barnes.

Barnesy’s Blog: Evidence would suggest that it’s not all doom & gloom at Sunderland this summer!

"I cannot see why Sunderland should fail to build on last season", says BBC Radio Newcastle’s Sunderland match commentator Nick Barnes, who believes that there’s plenty to be positive about ahead of the forthcoming campaign.

Barnesy’s Blog: “So.... Failure?! Jack Ross has not failed at Sunderland!”

"Jack Ross should be applauded for taking a team to the brink of promotion despite the adversities the club has faced since he arrived" writes BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes.

Barnesy’s Blog: The criticisms of Jack Ross from a minority of Sunderland fans confounds me!

After criticisms of Jack Ross coincided with a minor fan ‘altercation’ at Kings Cross station with the Sunderland manager, BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes feels compelled to defend him and offer up a common sense explanation of just how good a job he’s doing in charge.

Barnesy’s Blog: Sunderland ARE a good team, but now they must prove they’re better than the rest

"Jack Ross was strident before the Barnsley match that Sunderland are a good team and, when they play well, are the best in the division. Now the time has come to deliver on that assertion", writes BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes.

Barnesy’s Blog: Sunderland’s football won’t always be pretty, but stick with Jack Ross - he’s the man

BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes is back with his latest Roker Report column - and he’s reflecting on comments made about Sunderland’s ‘reserved’ style which, while not always pretty, is still getting us results.

Nick Barnes: Jack Ross has been Sunderland’s best signing & is the man to lead them to promotion

Jack Ross’ exemplary handling of the circus of a Checkatrade Trophy tie shows another side to an ever-improving and pragmatic manager.

Nick Barnes: “All Power to Max - Sunderland fans must get behind downtrodden midfielder!”

In the latest edition of Barnesy’s Blog, Roker Report columnist Nick Barnes talks extensively about Max Power and why people must get behind him as he attempts to kick-start his Sunderland career following a very tough period.

NICK BARNES: Stewart Donald & Charlie Methven’s Sunderland revolution is well & truly underway!

It’s been almost six months now since the new owners took over at Sunderland and, as Roker Report columnist Nick Barnes explains, they’ve undoubtedly been nothing short of a success during their short reign so far.

NICK BARNES: Jack Ross needs to perfect his Sunderland recipe - but there’s plenty time for that

Jack Ross’ Sunderland side have looked good so far in League One, but not so impressive where we can say comfortably that perfection is close. We mustn’t panic, though - this season is going to be a long one.

NICK BARNES: Vanity has no place in football; Sunderland must embrace all that League One offers

BBC Newcastle’s Nick Barnes looks deep into why League One is so bloody brilliant, and why it can offer a club like Sunderland the chance to rebuild its character ahead of an eventual return back to a higher level.

NICK BARNES: Sunderland needed change - now we’ve got it, I’m looking forward to the season!

An overwhelming majority of those associated with Sunderland AFC can’t wait for the new season to start - and renowned BBC Newcastle commentator Nick Barnes is no exception! Here, in his first blog for, Nick looks ahead to what is sure to be an exciting campaign.